Friends and family who rely on quick COVID-19 tests at home to safely celebrate their holidays should do these tests a day or two ago, or even in the morning, as close as possible to their arrival point. ..
The standard idea so far has been to perform a rapid test 1-3 days before an event such as an international flight or party, which was sufficient to prove that someone was not ill at the time of the test.
Rapid or antigenic tests are considered less sensitive than PCR tests, but they can detect if you are currently infected.
But the new Omicron variant, which is driving the proliferation of incidents in the United States, has changed that mindset. This variant is more infectious than other strains, has a shorter incubation period, causes breakthrough infections among vaccinated people, and hits the United States at the beginning of the holiday season.
Rachel Pilch Loeb, a quasi-research scientist at NYU School of Global Public Medicine and preparing, said: Harvard TH Chan Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health.
One of those examples is from an office holiday party in Oslo, Norway, in late November. Eighty-one of the 110 people who attended the party confirmed or estimated cases of COVID-19. Preliminary investigation Everyone who attended the party was not boosted, but was completely vaccinated primarily with mRNA shots. Each one had to take a negative test a day or two before the party.
“It’s a really dramatic transmission,” said Michael Osterholm, an epidemiologist and director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research Policy. Told SiriusXM last week. “It passes the red light at 300 mph.”
As a result, some public health experts suggest that it is better to perform a quick test at home within minutes of arriving at all types of meetings.
“I argue that the far more reliable result in Omicron is the test done 15 minutes before the rally,” said Epidemiologist, who recently left Harvard for sale at home. Said Dr. Michael Mina. COVID-19 will be tested as Chief Science Officer.
Mina said at a press conference on Tuesday.
Omicron is not only considered to be more contagious than other SARS-CoV-2 strains, but also has an incubation period of 2-3 days compared to 4 days for Delta and about 5 days for the original strain. It is believed to be much shorter. Of the virus.Within a few weeks of Omicron’s detection in the United States, it’s already The most dominant version U.S. virus
“It duplicates incredibly fast,” said Piltch-Loeb. “Therefore, this variant has a shorter incubation period, which is why the protocol for using rapid testing needs to be slightly different.”
The emergence of this particularly annoying variant towards the second pandemic holiday season has renewed some people’s COVID-19 anxiety and raised a wide range of questions about how to best use tools such as home testing. While these are considered aggressive additions to the pandemic toolbox, quick tests at home are also expensive, at least $ 10 per test, and aren’t always easy to find on store shelves.
Experts say that tools that have been available throughout the year, such as vaccination, testing, collection in outdoor spaces if possible, and masking, are still working. In particular, you need to fine-tune how quick tests are used and delivered at home.
When arriving at a party or rally, Mina recommends doing a quick inspection in a driveway car, saying that low temperatures can be detrimental, and continuing the inspection at room temperature.
“We really need to be able to live in the safest way possible while moving it forward,” he said. “Rapid inspection is one of the most powerful tools that hasn’t really been used in this pandemic and powerful way.”
The White House said Tuesday that it plans to offer US people a quick test at 500 million free homes from January.
At the same time, the exponential growth of new COVID-19 cases last week has fueled the demand for home testing, including Abbott Laboratories.
BinaxNOW, iHealth Labs. Inc.’s home antigen test and QuickVue home test.
Many pharmacy chains conducting COVID-19 testing at home say they are currently seeing unprecedented demand for these products. Some tests are not available for purchase online. Currently, purchases are restricted, but stores say they can be found on the shelves.
As of Tuesday, CVS Health Corp.
He said purchases are limited to six home tests per order. Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc.
There are four home test limits for each purchase, Walmart Inc.
Orders are limited to eight test kits, according to company statements. On Wednesday morning, some tests on these chains were out of stock online.
People can also have a direct rapid or PCR test at a clinic or mobile testing site. However, in a booming area like New York City, you may have to wait a few hours before taking the test, which can delay results.
“I personally believe that we are far beyond the time when we are in line,” Mina said. “And I’m completely disappointed in driving Boston [Street] Look at the people standing in line to get a PCR test, as you can’t get a quick test anywhere. “
Find out more about rapid home COVID-19 testing with MarketWatch.
According to experts, to detect Omicron, have a COVID-19 test at home just before the holiday gathering.
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