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Everything You Need To Know About COVID-19 Tests

Everything You Need To Know About COVID-19 Tests

A lot of information about coronavirus has been making rounds since the spread and there has been constant confusion about COVID-19 tests and how they differ. Over the past year, more and more people have come across some of the common symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, tiredness, sore throat, nasal congestion, shortness of breath, fatigue, diarrhea as well as loss of smell and taste. Read on to know more about who should get tested and how.  

Who should get tested?

As per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) guidelines, not every individual needs to be tested. Whereas, COVID-19 tests are recommended for all the individuals who experience fever, respiratory illness and also 

  • have a history of international travel in the last 14 days
  • came into contact with an individual with a confirmed or high risk of the virus 
  • have been frontline or healthcare workers 
  • have been hospitalized with Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) or Influenza Like Illness (ILI) or severe pneumonia

Further, asymptomatic individuals who came into contact with a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 case are to be tested between day 5 and day 10 after coming in contact. 

What documents are required for COVID-19 tests?

As per the guidelines of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), each individual requires a Government ID ( Aadhaar card / Voter Id / Passport ) to support the current address and contact number to be provided to the lab processing the sample. For the suspected individuals, travel history and interaction with any COVID-19 patient (if any) can also be asked. 

When to get tested for COVID-19?

In case you are experiencing any of the common COVID-19 symptoms including dry cough, fever, fatigues, headache, body ache, sore throat, nausea or loss of smell and taste, you can book your tests from home. 

Getting diagnostic tests for COVID-19 is the first step towards knowing if you’ve contracted the virus, thereby self-isolating and moving towards the right treatment if you are tested positive. Here are two types of COVID-19 tests that you can select from:

  1. COVID-19 RT-PCR Tests

A CDC approved rapid test for the coronavirus involves taking samples from the nose or throat. This test helps detect the active coronavirus infection. The presence of a virus in the sample brings about a positive result, whereas the negative result does not mean that you can never be infected. Results of COVID-19 RT-PCR tests are delivered within 24-36 hours. You can also book your test for home sample collection.

  1. COVID ANTIBODY IGG Tests 

Also known as serological tests, it involves taking blood samples for screening COVID-19 antibodies in the blood. This test does not look for the active virus but checks whether your immune system has responded to the virus. The presence of COVID-19 antibodies establishes that the person has been infected once, whereas the negative results highlight that the individual has never been exposed to the coronavirus. You can also book your COVID Antibody IGG tests to get results within 1-3 days. 

Successful home sample pickup for Covid-19 tests

What are the risks associated while testing for COVID-19?

In most cases, people feel a gagging sensation during the test when the swab is inserted in the nose or throat. The nasal aspirate might seem uncomfortable and painful, but its effects are temporary and usually goes away shortly after the test.

By: Navreet Kaur | on 2021-04-14

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