Don't get lab-tested without need, health authorities ask

Covid testing points are currently overloaded. Throughout Latvia, the waiting time can be four days. Laboratory representatives encourage people to follow the new rules and not get tested without need, Latvian Radio reported January 27.

In order to end the quarantine, the test is no longer needed. There is also no need for a nasal test, a saliva test is enough.

Laboratory BIOR receives up to 7,000 calls every day. One in seven can be tested as the capacity is slightly above 1,000 samples.

BIOR spokeswoman Ilze Dimante acknowledged: “In Riga we can book the visit in two to three days, four in Daugavpils, but in Rēzekne it may be on the same day if you call early.”

10 thousand samples are processed daily at the E. Gulbja Laboratory. It is working 24 hours a day. Džineta Dimante, head of the lab projects, said: “We're in 24/7 mode, we're doing 10,000 tests a day; the load is much higher because there is the proportion of positive [results]. Because they take more time.” The positive tests shall be re-tested. 

Dimante said: “At present there are Cabinet amendments that you can end quarantine without a test or doctor's note. Please don't call and try to sign in. And for all those who don't need the certificate [of recovery] that much, if the antigen test is positive, isolate, treat, recover, don't try to confirm it in the laboratory.

The major laboratories currently can prepare results within 24 hours, but in smaller branches it will take at least 36 hours to reply.

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