Towards more accurate HIV testing in sub-Saharan Africa: a multi-site evaluation of HIV RDTs and risk factors for false positives

by Cara S Kosack, Anne-Laure Page, Greet Beelaert et al.
Journal of the International AIDS Society 2017, 20:21345

12 pp. 480 kB

In this first systematic head-to-head evaluation of the most widely used HIV rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs), individual RDTs performed more poorly than in the WHO evaluations: only one test met the recommended thresholds for RDTs of ≥99% sensitivity and ≥98% specificity. By performing all tests in a centralized setting, the authors show that these differences in performance cannot be attributed to study procedure, end-user variation, storage conditions, or other methodological factors. These results highlight the existence of geographical and population differences in individual HIV RDT performance and underscore the challenges of designing locally validated algorithms that meet the latest WHO-recommended thresholds.

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