A Johannesburg mother has described her traumatic and confusing ordeal after being told she had tested positive for COVID-19 and needed to have a C-section, only to test negative a few days later.
The pregnant woman arrived at the Sunninghill Hospital last month and was tested for the virus before giving birth. The test came back positive.
A few days later, she questioned the results and tested again, this time with a different laboratory. The second test came back negative.
The Netcare group said that its hospitals outsourced the testing to other laboratories and referred Eyewitness News to experts in the virologist field to explain what could have happened.
Dr Allison Glass, a clinical virologist at Lancet Laboratories, said that it was likely that when the woman tested for a second time, the virus was already out of her system.
“It may have been picked up right at the end of the period, where the body was starting to clear the virus. If you test them a day or two later, you might not find it again because they have stopped shedding.”
The country’s top virologist Professor Shabir Madhi agreed, saying that there was no way that the first positive test results were incorrect.
“It’s very unlikely that these tests were false positive. It’s more likely that the subsequent tests were either false negative or she was recovering from the virus without knowing it.”