Coronavirus tests to be extended
The Swiss health authorities have decided to extend tests for potential coronavirus patients as part of the government’s planned Covid-19 exit strategy.
All patients with symptoms of an acute respiratory illness, with or without a fever, with muscle pains and loss of taste and smell should be tested according to a statement on Wednesday by the Federal Public Health Office.
Doctors will also be allowed to test patients in hospitals as well as residents of old people’s homes even if they show no symptoms.
The office said the measures were a precaution to prevent a surge of Covid-19 cases when the government restrictions are to be gradually eased as of next Monday.
At the same time, the health authorities plan to resume a contact tracing policy using an application on mobile phones.
However, the office advises against a broad campaign with blood tests.
Experts argue so-called polymerase chain reaction (PCR) diagnostic tests are more reliable. They are based on specimens taken from a patient’s nasal swabs and sputum.
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