According to the representative of the Ministry of Health Anna Strapcāne, such an approach will at the same time allow medical institutions to implement all the necessary precautionary measures more effectively.
This means that in the future, Covid-19 tests will be carried out, for example, on patients who will be taken to the hospital by the Emergency Medical Service.
Already in hospitals, analyzes were performed for several groups of patients, for example, in cases where urgent operations are required. Hospitalized patients with pneumonia or acute respiratory infection, as well as persons with unknown fever, are also tested. The need for Covid-19 tests could also be decided by your doctor, regardless of the circumstances.
In the future, tests will be taken to the reception units, regardless of the patient’s complaints, although the exception will be children if they do not have symptoms of the disease.
At the same time, patients with symptoms of the disease (fever, cough, sore throat or difficulty breathing) are asked by the Ministry of Health to contact their GP, who will refer them for Covid-19 tests.
It has already been reported that a GP may now decide to refer a patient for analysis if the patient has Covid-19-specific symptoms. In contrast, patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease or oncological disease may be referred by a GP for analysis, regardless of whether the patient has Covid-19-specific symptoms.
Within 12 working hours of receiving the test, the laboratory will call the patient and agree on a time and place to submit the tests. If the GP considers that the patient cannot go to the test delivery point on their own, the tests will be performed at the patient’s home.
Patients receiving organ replacement therapy, those with immunodeficiency and those undergoing emergency treatment, such as before surgery, may also be referred for screening without signs of disease. As these persons have no symptoms of upper respiratory disease, the person can also go to the analysis transfer points by public transport or otherwise if the person uses a face mask.
The Ministry of Health informs that currently the examination of samples is provided by the Central Laboratory, the “E. Swan Laboratory” and the National Reference Laboratory for Microbiology.
The telephone number 8303 is currently serviced by the Central Laboratory, diverting calls to the “E. Swan Laboratory” according to the GP’s place of practice or the patient’s place of residence to ensure geographical accessibility. If there is a longer waiting time at the nearest laboratory, the patient can be referred to the next nearest test transfer point.
At the same time, as before, there are a number of groups, such as medical practitioners, pharmacists and pharmacist assistants, emergency workers, news journalists and others, who can also be referred for analysis by their employer if they have symptoms. Extensive testing is also organized for patients hospitalized in social care centers and hospitals.
State-paid tests on Covid-19 are also performed by persons who, within 14 days of returning to Latvia, develop symptoms of the disease and have the opportunity to travel to the test transfer points with their car.
To apply for state-funded tests, patients should call the Central Laboratory at 8303 for mild symptoms. The phone is open on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
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