Since COVID-19 is such a new disease, much is still being learned about how it spreads and the severity of illness it causes. With all the news around the pandemic, it is understandable that there is a lot of confusion, particularly around who may need testing and how to get testing.
In many areas of the U.S. and around the world, people are being told to stay home and avoid travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, travel restrictions may not apply to employees of critical industries, such as trucking, public health professionals, financial services, and food supply. So what should someone do if they develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19 while traveling?
Immediately identifying health care workers exposed to a patient with COVID-19, and quickly assessing their risk of contraction is critical to prevent the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. In less than two weeks, Mayo Clinic has implemented a streamlined process and created electronic tools to close that loop within an average of two hours of a confirmed case, at any time of day or night.
People with conditions such as spinal cord injury, Lou Gehrig's disease and multiple sclerosis are at risk of developing severe respiratory problems related to COVID-19 because the muscles that help them breathe already may not function normally.
There are two types of tests for COVID-19, and it is important to understand the difference. The first type, a diagnostic test, is used to find out if you are actively infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. This test typically is done as a nasal swab. The second type of test is a serologic test to determine if you had a recent infection of SARS-CoV-2 and now have antibodies against the virus. This test is done through a blood sample.