Police Bust Reused COVID-19 Nasal Swab Scam In Indonesia Airport

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Indonesian police have arrested several employees of a pharmaceutical company for allegedly washing and reselling used Covid nasal swab test kits.

According to reports, up to 9,000 passengers at an airport in Medan may have been tested with the reused swab sticks, say police, adding that they believed the scam had been happening since December last year at Kualanamu airport in Medan, North Sumatra.

State-owned company Kimia Farma is now reportedly facing a potential lawsuit launched on behalf of the travellers. Airport authorities had used antigen rapid test kits supplied by Kimia Farma.

Passengers are required to have a negative test if they want to fly, and the airport offers the option of getting the swabs done on site. Covid nasal swab testing has become routine in many countries hit by the global pandemic.

Indonesia has recorded about 1.7 million COVID-19 cases and more than 46,000 deaths linked to the pandemic.

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