Covid-19 Home Testing Kits: Usage and Concerns
India is facing the third wave of Covid-19. As the cases are increasing rapidly, people who have any flu-like symptoms get suspicious of being infected by Covid-19. The panic mode of people puts a burden on healthcare workers. To increase testing without putting a strain on hospitals, rapid testing kits are available in the market.
As the testing kits are readily available at the nearest drug store, people are performing tests at home. Home testing kits are useful in curbing the spread of the virus as people are not going outside to get tested. Although the awareness is a step towards increasing testing, it is creating stress on officials.
The main reason for concern is that not all people who are doing tests at home and coming positive are reporting it to authorities. Due to this, such cases are going unreported. As reported by Times of India, Suresh Kakani, additional commissioner, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) told a news agency, “There is no data entry from home testing kits. It is a screening test, not a confirmatory test. We don’t know about those who are using self-testing kits. If those testing positive don’t follow isolation rules, they will end up infecting their close contacts.”
If you are taking a test at home, then some responsible steps can increase the effectiveness of the test.
Step 1: Ensure proper sanitation of the place where the test is going to be conducted.
Step 2: Clean and sanitise the packet of the testing kit before opening it.
Step 3: Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and then place the contents of the kit on a sanitised surface.
Step 4: Look at the description on the testing kit, and download the required app and fill in all the necessary details.
Step 5: After conducting the test, follow the markings given in the mobile app to check if you are infected or not.
Step 6: Place the test kit along with all its components in a disposal bag and dump it in the bin.
If you have tested positive for Covid-19, then go for home isolation. If you have symptoms, but the test is showing a negative result, then take an RT-PCR test. To know about the verified kits, you can visit the official website of the ICMR.
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