CAPE TOWN – The Department of Health has commenced with a mass screening and testing programme that will see health workers visit homes and communities across the country. Should you display symptoms of the virus in your screening, you will be referred to a healthcare facility for a test.
Here is what the test entails ;
- Upper Respiratory Tract – With the patients head titled back, a swab is slowly inserted through the nostril until the nasopharynx (the upper part of the throat connecting to the nasal cavity) is reached. The swab is to be rotated and held in this position for a few seconds then removed slowly.
- Lower Respiratory Tract – With the patients head titled back slightly and mouth wide open, saying “aaah” with the swab inserted into the mouth to first rub the tonsils and then pharynx (back of the throat in a figure 8 motion) – this is the primary site of infection with the highest viral load.
- Sputum Collection – The patient is asked to cough and produce saliva that has been brought up.