By Bernie Bell
This didn’t happen in Orkney, but it did happen. No names or places, for obvious reasons.
A young man felt unwell.
It only lasted a few days, and he thought he was OK.
He didn’t take a Covid Test.
He did go out for a night on the town with his mates.
He then felt unwell again, took a test, and tested positive for Covid.
The local Test and Trace team then had to contact all his friends and all the pubs/clubs he’d been to on his night out.
This is a true tale and, I suspect, an all too common one.
IF YOU FEEL UNWELL – TAKE A TEST!!!
I was reminded of the old saying….
“For the want of a nail, the shoe was lost.
For the want of the shoe, the horse was lost.
For the want of a horse, the rider was lost.
And all for the want of a horse-shoe nail.”
For the want of a test…………..
Symptoms of coronavirus
The most common symptoms are a new:
- continuous cough
- fever/high temperature (37.8C or greater)
- loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste (anosmia)
How to get tested if you have symptoms
Anyone in Scotland with COVID-19 symptoms can be tested.
You take a PCR test and have the results within 48 hours (PCR stands for polymerase chain reaction). The test looks for the genetic code of the virus and involves taking a swab of the throat and nose.
- use this self help guide: access to testing for coronavirus on NHS Inform to help you select the right test
- book a PCR test to check if you have coronavirus on gov.uk
- if you live in Highland, Orkney, Shetland, or the Western Isles, you can book a test via your health board website
- call 119
- book a priority symptomatic test slot if you are an essential worker through the essential worker portal on gov.uk
You can choose whether to attend one of the testing sites in Scotland or to have a home testing kit delivered to you. Guidance on tests for children is available on the booking system.
If you do not have symptoms (lateral flow tests)
Free, fast and regular testing for people who do not have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) is available to everyone in Scotland.
Around 1 in 3 people with COVID-19 do not show symptoms, so can spread the virus to others without knowing.
Everyone is Scotland can get rapid lateral flow devices (LFDs) for testing at home twice a week.
There are a number of ways you can get a rapid LFD test.
If you currently get rapid LFD test kits from your nursery or childcare provider, school, college, university or workplace you should continue to do so.
Order online for home delivery
- order coronavirus (COVID-19) rapid lateral flow tests on gov.uk for home delivery
Your order will contain one pack with seven LFD tests inside, and it will be delivered to your home in one to two days. You can only order one pack per household each day.
If you’re ordering for another household in addition to your own household, you should:
- complete a separate order
- use their personal details including name, address, date of birth and email address
If you cannot place an order online, you can order by calling 119.
Collect a rapid LFD test kit from your nearest COVID-19 test site
- find your nearest COVID-19 test site where LFD tests can be collected
Up to two packs of seven LFD tests can be collected per household. If you are collecting for multiple people, up to four packs of seven LFD tests can be collected.
You can collect your packs of LFD tests from a COVID-19 test site between 8am to 8pm. You do not need to book an appointment.
Collect a rapid LFD test kit from your nearest pharmacy
- find your nearest participating pharmacy where LFD tests can be collected
One pack of seven LFD tests can be collected per person. If you are collecting on behalf of a household, you may receive one pack for each household member.
Please check the opening times of your local pharmacy to collect your packs of LFD tests. You do not need to book an appointment.
Please do not enter a pharmacy if have COVID-19 symptoms. If you have symptoms you must self-isolate immediately and book a PCR test through NHS Inform.
Carry out a rapid LFD test at a test site
You may be able to visit a community asymptomatic test site if they are available in your area.
Check the targeted community testing page to see if there is a community asymptomatic test site in your local authority.
The symptom list is outdated and I wish the NHS would make this more public. From BMJ https://www.bmj.com/content/373/bmj.n1654. ‘The website of the Covid Symptoms Study being run by the health science company ZOE and King’s College London said the most commonly reported covid-19 symptoms were now headache, runny nose, and sore throat and not fever, cough, and loss of sense of smell or taste, as listed by the government.’
This could be why it is so often mistaken by people… who then do not seek a test.