Brits are desperate to know how to get tested for coronavirus after it was revealed that victims could show no symptoms for five days.
Although more than 1,500 cases have been confirmed in the UK, health officials believe the actual number lies between 35,000 and 50,000 as many people with COVID-19 have not been diagnosed.
How do I get tested for coronavirus?
You will be get tested for coronavirus only if you have been admitted into hospital with respiratory problems.
Those with suspected Coronavirus who are just experiencing mild symptoms will no longer be tested by the NHS.
Health officials have advised the public to stay away from GP surgeries, pharmacies and hospitals if they have mild symptoms and to instead self-isolate.
The NHS has also asked people to not call 111 if their symptoms are mild.
“You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you’re staying at home,” NHS officials stated. “Testing for coronavirus is not needed if you’re staying at home.”
The Government announced on March 12 that it had axed widespread testing following Boris Johnson’s emergency Cobra meeting.
Prior to this, those with suspected coronavirus were referred for testing at assessment pods by NHS 111.
The NHS was also sending nurses to test people at home in the hope of containing the deadly virus.
However, both of these options are no longer available.
Can I buy a coronavirus home testing kit?
Yes, people will soon be able to buy coronavirus home testing kits from private companies.
SureScreen Diagnostic claims it has created kits with a 98 per cent accuracy rate but but recommends “any non-negative results are referred to a medical health practitioner through the NHS who have access to confirmatory testing through a laboratory”.
The Test Cassette kit, which it claims is a registered IVD device, can diagnose the virus within just ten minutes.
According to SureScreen Diagnostic, the home devices work by identifying the body’s reaction to coronavirus three to seven days after infection.
The company says that customers will simply need to provide a finger-prick sample, similar to that of a home blood glucose test, in order to get a diagnosis.
Why has widespread Coronavirus testing stopped?
Prof Chris Whitty, the chief medical officer for England, has said that it is “no longer necessary for us to identify every case.”
He said: “We will move from having testing mainly done in homes and outpatients and walk-in centres, to a situation where people who are remaining at home do not need testing.”