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Queues for COVID-19 tests have shrunk in Latvia

After changing the procedures by which citizens can apply for state-paid COVID-19 tests, patient flow has reduced, Sergejs Ņikišins, coordinator of the Latvian COVID-19 lab network, told Latvian Radio November 10.

In Rīga, tests can now be done on the following day, as opposed to the six-day queues a few weeks ago. As of November 5, the aslimnica.lv website of the Riga East Clinical University Hospital started electronic application for COVID-19 tests, where it can also be done on the weekends and outside working hours.

However, Ņikišins pointed out that people are not too eager to use the possibility. Many don't know that testing does not necessarily require a GP's referral. The test may also be carried out free of charge if there is a referral to a scheduled medical examination, surgery or any other medical service.

“It works as a referral to the COVID-19 test, no additional referral from the GP is needed,” Ņikišins said.

He added that a child's referral to an examination or surgery is also valid for parents as a referral to the COVID-19 test. “There's no need to take any additional referral from a GP to come with the child,” Ņikišins said.

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