Requesting the cycle threshold used for rtPCR tests to detect sars-cov-2 in Pillar 1 and 2 testing

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, Department of Health (Northern Ireland) should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

Dear Department of Health (Northern Ireland),

I formally request the cycle threshold used for pillar 1 and pillar 2 rtPCR testing for the sars-cov-2 virus. If the CT has varied over the course of testing, this should be forthcoming.

I also request identification of the primers used for the PCR test, how many are used and whether the sars-cov-2 variant identified in the UK in September has affected the specificity of the current PCR test.

What daily checks, if any, are carried out to identify and compensate for the false positive rate of PCR testing? What is the daily false positive rate? Are any checks carried out between test facilities each day to check for false positives?

Yours faithfully,

Mark Stronge

DoH FOI, Department of Health (Northern Ireland)

2 Attachments

We have received your Freedom of Information request and I attach your acknowledgement letter and a Public Information Leaflet.

John McCann
Information Management Branch
Department of Health
Tel: 02890 528218

John McCann
Information Management Branch
Tel: 02890 528218

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