SHIELD FAQ - What are the differences between the saliva tests and the nasal swab tests? Which is better?
In nasal swab collection, a trained technician will insert a swab to the nasal passage of the patient to collect the specimen. The process is invasive, and many patients find the process either difficult or uncomfortable. A skilled technician is needed for nasal swab tests to collect the specimen properly from a specific nasal region, making it error prone.
In comparison for the saliva test, patient drools saliva into a tube in isolation, no skilled technician is needed, and sample collection process is neither invasive nor uncomfortable. Being noninvasive and not requiring highly skilled technician for saliva sample collections makes the process easy and comfortable. Since the sample collection is also not from a specific region, chances of human error are minimal.
We used the mid-turbinate nasal PCR for a comparator for the EUA. The results were comparable in our study.