Regional health staff providing answers - this is going to be a very difficult time for everyone. Caution and common sense is what we have going for us

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

March 15th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

We had asked the Halton Regional Health office for some detail on just what happens when a person thinks they may have contracted the CORVID19 virus.

They were unable to get back to us before the close of business on Friday but someone over here is working on the weekend.

Our questions and the answers they provided are set out below:

Who decides if a resident should be tested for COVID-19?
• Coronavirus infections are diagnosed by a health care provider based on symptoms, clinical history and laboratory tests. Travel history is also important. There is a specific test for COVID-19 to confirm the infection if it is suspected.
• Testing is arranged by health care professionals, in collaboration with local public health.

2. What does testing involve?
• Testing involves a swab of the nose or throat (sometimes both) and is sent by health care professionals to the Public Health Ontario Laboratory in Toronto.

3. Where does the testing take place?
• Testing is being conducted at the Public Health Ontario Laboratory in Toronto, which is working collaboratively with the National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg.

Additional laboratory testing sites are also being set up across the province. For more information, please see this Province of Ontario news release.

We have since leaned through other sources that the COVID19 test is no small matter.

The people doing the testing are said to be at great personal risk. They have to wear protective suits that includes a mask and a plastic head piece. The room the testing is done in has to be scrubbed down. The testing takes time and eats into the hospital resources.

There is not enough in the way of capacity to do all the testing – and the data we have available suggests that the full measure of the wave of people infected has yet to reach us.

An interesting link to the rate at which the virus is spreading is HERE

The link to live data tells us that the number of people being infected is still climbing.
We are in a very necessary phase of the COVID19 battle. It will pass – when – that is what we don’t know. What we do know is that there are ways to slow down the spread of the virus. Wash out hands frequently and limit the people you meet with and keep some distance between people you do meet with.

I had dinner with a friend in the middle of the week and followed up that event with a note saying with should do this more often – he responded – “see you on the other side of COVID 19”.

Be sensible – be careful and remember we are all in this together.

Hand washing

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