Coronavirus Self-Tests: A self-test is that test which you can carry out yourself from home. This is made possible with the help of a self-test kit. This helps in reassuring yourself that you’re not ill before moving to work or school. However, self-tests aren’t an alternative for testing by the government if you have the symptoms. Also, they can’t be utilized as a pre-admission-test for an event.
Based on some evolving evidence, the Center for disease control recommends completely vaccinated people to be tested every 5 to 7 days after coming into close contact with people that are suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19.
Testing is more important to assist in reducing COVID-19 spread. If you’ve symptoms or you’ve had some exposure to a person suspected to have COVID-19, you need testing. Quarantine if you’ve been in near contact with people having COVID 19.
If you require testing for COVID-19 & can’t be tested by a healthcare professional, you should consider utilizing either a self-collection kit / self-test which can be done at home or any place. Other times self-test is called a “home-test” or “at-home test.”
Self-collection kits & tests are accessible either through prescription or over-the-counter, minus a prescription, at a retail store or a pharmacy. Presently, self-collection kits & tests are utilized for the detection of present infection.
Remember that you should complete read and understand the manufacturer’s instructions you use the test kit. Ask a healthcare professional if you’ve questions about the test or the results.
- Some tests need a nasal specimen which needs to be collected utilizing an anterior-nasal swab or nasal mid-turbinate-swab.
- Other tests need saliva specimens.
Getting ready to Collect Specimen
- Clean your hands using soap.
- Follow manufacturer’s guidelines added to test kit. The guide can also be found in specimen collection.
- If you don’t collect specimens like directed, your test outcomes may be incorrect.
- When collected, send the specimen to some testing facility or utilize the specimen, like described in the manufacturer’s instructions, to be done with the self-test.
Doing the test
Follow the manufacturer’s directions exactly & follow the steps as they are listed. Some manufacturers can also offer other resources, including instructional videos or quick-reference guides to assist you in performing the test well.
- Keep all test items according to the manufacturer’s instructions up to when ready for usage.
- Check the expiration date. Do not utilize expired test components or tests which are damaged or look discolored depending on the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Clean table, countertop, or other tops where you’ll do a test.
- Do not open test tools or other test parts until you’re ready to begin the testing process.
- Read & record test outcomes only within the amount of period specified in the manufacturer’s instructions. The result read after or before the stated timeframe can be incorrect.
- Do not reuse other components or test devices
- After the outcomes, discard specimen collected, test kit plus collection-swab. Clean the surface & clean the hands.
Provide your results to a healthcare professional or, if you don’t have a healthcare professional, to state or local health-department. Other self-test kits have an app that will auto-report the results to appropriate public-health authorities.
When your outcomes are positive
Inform any healthcare provider of the positive test result that you’ve had & remain in contact during the illness period. If the illness gets severe, find medical attention. To prevent spreading this virus to other people, follow CDC guidelines.
Stay in a particular room & away from different people & pets in-home or place of residence. You should utilize a different bathroom. If you require to be near other animals or people in or outside a place wear your mask. Do not share household items, including cups, towels, & utensils.
Inform the person you are very close to that you have SARS-CoV-2. Infected person spreads COVID-19 beginning 48 before a person has symptoms/tests positive.
When you test negative
A negative test outcome means SARS-CoV-2 wasn’t found in the specimen.
However, a test may offer a negative result to other people that have COVID-19. This is known as a false negative. You can also test negative if the specimen is collected very early. In such a case, you can test positive after some days of illness.
Other self-tests are made to be utilized in series. Serial-testing is the time a person tests multiple times for COVID-19 on a routine basis like every few days. With frequent testing, you will detect COVID-19 faster and reduce the spread of the infection.
If the self-test becomes negative, you need to follow the manufacturer’s directions for serial-testing which are included in the kit when buying, or you can get the instructions the on FDA website. They’ll likely suggest you test again in 2 – 3 days.
When the results have Error or invalid
Other times the outcomes are not clear or inconclusive, and the test can’t tell you if the results are negative or positive.
If the display on the self-test indicates an invalid result or test error, the test didn’t work well. If this occurs, you need to refer to instructions.
Invalid outcomes occur due to several reasons. Maybe the specimen wasn’t collected correctly, or the testing instrument might have malfunctioned.
Regardless of the test results, you need to always review results with the healthcare provider.