Covid 19 test experience
I wanted to share my experience of being tested for corona.
It started with me feeling very unwell.. My body was aching similar to when you have the flu, but for some reason more so in my lower back and around my hips. I had a fever that went from 37.7c to 39c in less than 4 hours. And let's just say I could not remember the last time I felt that sick. I had the faintest cough, hardly noticeable to be honest! I did however have a killer headache!
I read up about the symptoms and realised pretty quickly that I was displaying a lot of the symptoms, I remembered the night before that I had issues with my stomach as well, I thought best to Dial the 16 000 hotline. A lady answered and asked how she could help, I explained my symptoms and she put me through to speak to a medical doctor. He asked me to explain my symptoms and then advised me to go to my nearest health center. This was already very late at night and I decided to go the next morning. I was told by the doctor that I could not choose to be tested, and that only the medical staff can make the decision to test me. I woke up still having a high fever. I headed to my nearest health center where the security blocked me from entering and demanded to see my health card, I showed him my card where he said that my health center is 81 and I needed to go there! I explained that the doctor on the hotline advised me to come to 23 but he would not hear it. He said that, that was his instructions and I could not enter.
So me myself and my fever headed 30 minutes out of Doha to my assigned health center! I arrived at the health center and was stopped at the entrance by a security guard that informed me I needed to wait as only one person at a time is allowed in. I waited outside in the boiling heat for about 5 or 10 minutes. I was called in and greeted by a nurse that stood miles away from me, I explained my symptoms and she proceeded to take my temperature making sure to stand very far away from me. She then left me in the entrance and consulted a doctor. The decision was made, I needed to be tested.
I was informed that I needed to wait 2 to 2.5 hours, and had to be available immediately the minute they called me to come back inside for the test. There was no way I could leave the premises of the health center as I had nowhere to go and it was around 30 minutes from my home. This was around 11:30 am and about 38 degrees outside. I could not wait in the health center and had to wait in my car, I will be honest, at this point I sat in tears feeling absolutely miserable and very sick. Luck was on my side as the health center I went to was not that busy and I received a call within 45min of leaving the health center to wait in my car.
I entered and was led to a room where I was asked to wait, I waited around 12 minutes before two doctors entered, they once again asked my symptoms and asked if I was in any contact with an infected person, I answered their questions and they proceeded to do the swab test. They swab the inside of your mouth with what looks like an earbud on a long stick, the mouth swab is over in a split second. The nose swab is definitely not very pleasant as that earbud on a long stick gets shoved up one of your nostrils. Its definitely not for the faint of heart, but then again it was over quickly.
I was instructed to download the Ehteraz application and the doctor made sure to explain the application to me. It showed that I was in good health as it displayed the green barcode. I asked the doctor how I would be informed if I was positive as up until that point I honestly felt scared and not sure what happens after the test and if I could even go home. I was informed that the green barcode could possibly turn grey while my test was being processed.
I was asked to sign a form stating that I would not disable or delete the Ehteraz application, and that I would keep it running the entire time. I was also told that the ministry would contact me if I was infected or the barcode on the application would turn red. None of these ever happened. The barcode stayed green the entire time.
I was free to go home and wait for my test results. The test results were sent to me by 11pm that same evening, informing me that I tested negative for Covid 19. Overall it was not the most unpleasant situation, but at times I did feel a little unsure of what was happening next but it was pretty easy and not that uncomfortable to go through. I will say that it was scary waiting for the results not knowing if i was infected or not. I think I would have felt less scared going to the health center being sure of exactly what the procedure included and what would happen if I was positive. I guess as humans we feel secure when we are informed! In the end it is a great relief knowing that me and my family are safe.