Starting Monday the Netherlands will test everyone with coronavirus symptoms
The number of testing locations in the country soared to 80
- May 30, 2020 17:00
- Aseniya Dimitrova
Starting on Monday 1st June, the Netherlands will begin testing all citizens with mild coronavirus-like symptoms, announced the Government. Anyone that has complaints and believes he might have contracted Covid-19 can call a national number and get an appointment for a test in one of 80 testing locations.
Covid-19 symptoms? Call the hotline.
The Netherlands has increased its capacity to test people for the new coronavirus. Across the Netherlands, the number of GGD test locations has been expanded to over 80.
The large-scale testing of citizens is essential to containing the spread of Covid-19. Now, the country announces its readiness to test everyone that has even mild symptoms that are similar to those of Covid-19 patients.
Recently, a lot of work has gone into expanding the laboratory capacity, the required amount of test materials and the source and contact research so that broad testing can be carried out to gain insight into where the virus is wandering, explain the authorities. Minister Hugo de Jonge (Public Health, Welfare and Sport) quoted by the governmental website said that “By testing everyone with complaints, we quickly see where the virus may flare up again and we can immediately stop it. For everyone with complaints such as a cough, cold or fever, the following applies: 'Stay at home and have yourself tested!' ”
How does testing in the Netherlands work?
A national toll-free number (0800-1202) will be available from 1 June at 8:00 AM. It can be reached seven days a week from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM and allows callers to make an appointment at a test site nearby.
The existing test locations are available throughout the Netherlands, spread over the 25 GGD regions. If necessary, that number will continue to grow in the coming period. The GGDs also have a number of mobile testing sites and test teams that can come to your home if necessary.
It is also important to know that a test should only be taken when the respective complaints are present. There is no point in taking a test without complaints. This might deprive someone in real need of the chance to get tested and puts an unnecessary strain on the system.
To establish whether a caller needs a test or not, a number of questions are asked about the nature of their complaints. The caller is also asked for their BSN number for identification.
Only then will he or she be given the time and place to take the test. The aim is to make it as soon as possible, in principle, on the next day.
Both negative and positive patients will be called back within 48 hours with their results. If there is an infection with the new coronavirus, the regional GGD will call and trigger a contact investigation.
From the moment someone gets complaints, that person is required to stay at home and is therefore placed in isolation. Their housemates are urged to go into home quarantine for 14 days, too. The close contacts that are discovered in the source and contact research are also asked to stay at home for two weeks and to report on any health complaints.
Finally, it may take longer to make an appointment and to get tested in the beginning but everyone with complaints related to the coronavirus is going to be helped as quickly as possible, asure the authorities. The government also reminds that the adherence to strict hygiene measures and the 1.5-meter distance rule by all Dutch people remains of great importance, in addition to extensive testing and tracing.
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