COVID 19 – Does taking a COVID 19 Screening Test nullify the fast?

Q. Does taking a COVID 19 Screening Test nullify the fast?

A. The Covid-19 Doctors on Call, established by KwaZulu-Natal Doctors Healthcare Coalition (KZNDHC) who offer screening and advice around Covid-19 in South Africa have confirmed that a Covid 19 Screening Test entails the following:

  1. A swab is slowly inserted through the nostril until the nasopharynx (the upper part of the throat connecting to the nasal cavity) is reached. (Upper Respiratory Tract)
  2. A swab is inserted into the mouth with the mouth wide open, to first rub the tonsils and then pharynx (the back of the throat). (Lower Respiratory Tract)
  3. The patient is asked to cough and produce saliva that has been brought up. (Sputum Collection)

The tool used in the test is a sterile, dry cotton or polyester swab that does not contain any substance or medication prior to testing.

In terms of Shariah, the insertion of a dry object into the mouth or nostril does not nullify the fast. Accordingly, taking a COVID 19 Screening Test whilst fasting will not nullify the fast. (Binaayah 4/65)

Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

Mufti Ismaeel Bassa