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Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

Early diagnosis and treatment helps curb the spread and save lives

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus. Most people who fall sick with COVID-19 will experience mild to moderate symptoms & recover without special treatment.

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Precautions against Covid-19

What can you do to prevent Coronovirus?

Wash your hands

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Wear a Mask

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Stay at Home

Stay at Home

Keep Safe Distance

Keep Safe Distance

Sanitise Surfaces

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India is getting Vaccinated

Thinking why should you get vaccinated?


1

Covid-19 vaccines being administered in India are safe and effective

2

Vaccines are permitted under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by Indian regulators after rigorous assessments of laboratory & clinical trial data on quality, safety, production of protective antibodies and efficacy

3

Covid-19 vaccination will help protect you by creating antibodies (immune system) to fight against coronavirus infection


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Frequently Asked Questions

Have a doubt? Here are some FAQs


At present, the Covid-19 RT PCR test is among the top ways of diagnosing the presence of the Covid-19 virus. It is 70% reliable but a negative report shouldn’t rule the possibility of infection. If you continue to show symptoms, please consult a doctor. Covid-19 RT PCR works to spot genetic information of the virus. Available in 24-72 hours, Covid-19 RT PCR test report indicates the presence of the viral RNA, thus indicating if you are infected or not. The COVID test may yield false negatives in case of a bad swab sample or sample contamination or a false positive by detecting RNA fragments after you are no longer infected.

RT-PCR stands for Reverse Transcription – Polymerase Chain Reaction and it is currently the most accurate and reliable Covid-19 test. The coronavirus RT PCR test is used to detect the presence of viral RNA and this indicates whether you are infected at the time of the test. However, fragments of the virus may be detected post infection and recovery also. The RNA extracted from the swab is converted to DNA. During the test, the DNA is amplified and with each cycle it is doubled. The higher the CT value, the lower the infection. This CT score is available with an MRI scan.


You may opt for home sample collection for the coronavirus RT PCR test if you are unable to visit the testing centre, are in home isolation, or have certain coronavirus symptoms. You should request the healthcare professionals to visit your home to avail this facility. The samples will be collected and analyses at the laboratory.


The rapid antigen Covid-19 test is used to detect proteins produced by the Covid-19 virus. Here, the Covid-19 test report can be provided in 10-30 minutes. Hence, the rapid antigen test is useful in urgent situations, where quick decisions are to be made. The false positive rate for rapid antigen Covid-19 test results is quite low. However, the false negative rate can be as high as 50%. Hence, your doctor may recommend a Covid-19 RT PCR after a negative from a rapid antigen test.

In the Covid-19 lateral flow test (LFT) a swab sample is obtained from the back of the nose or throat and placed in a tube of liquid. A sample of this liquid is then dropped onto a small strip. If you are positive, the strip of paper will indicate two lines. This Covid-19 test works like a pregnancy test, is recommended for asymptomatic patients, and provides results within 30 minutes. This test isn’t currently available in India.

Sites are asked to collect certain patient information during coronavirus testing to understand the Covid-19 impact better, aid contact tracing, note positivity rates and trends, assess testing coverage, and develop plans for Covid-19 mitigation.


Yes, you can book a coronavirus RT PCR test with a private diagnostic centre and certain airlines have partnerships with diagnostic centres for pre-flight Covid-19 tests. You can request to get your Covid-19 RT PCR test report online and it can be sent to your email address. Search for “Covid-19 RT PCR test near me” to get a list of pathology labs and public health centres you can visit.

Spread of Covid-19 through surfaces is unlikely. However, as per some laboratory studies, the virus may last on metal for 5-9 days, on wood for 4 days, on plastic for 2-3 days, on cardboard for 24 hours, on copper for 4 hours, on aluminium for 2-8 hours, on glass for up to 5 days, on ceramics for 5 days, and on paper for a few minutes to 5 days.

Monitoring your body temperature is crucial to the self-care process. Ideally, you should measure temperature and saturation every 8 hours, which would mean at least 2 times a day.

Asymptomatic cases refer to people who never develop Covid-19 symptoms even though they are infected with the disease. If the Covid-19 test report of your spouse is positive and you have no symptoms, you could be asymptomatic.

Mild Covid-19 symptoms include tiredness, headaches, muscle pain, a loss of taste or smell, and a fever. However, the Covid-19 fever temperature does not generally cross 37.8°C (100.4°F). In case of mild Covid-19 symptoms, runny nose or sore throat are not likely to be present, though they may occur. Your appetite remains normal, and you do not have Covid-19 breathing problems (marked breathlessness). These mild coronavirus symptoms last for a week to 10 days.

If you recover from Covid-19, you cannot spread the virus unless you get re-infected. The general opinion is that if you have no coronavirus symptoms and no Covid-19 fever after about 10 days of the positive Covid-19 test, you are not contagious anymore.

The Covid-19 virus can spread through microdroplets, meaning that extremely small bits of the virus remain suspended in the air, typically in indoor settings, clinging to particles of water or dust. Airborne transmission means that the virus lingers in the air and remains viable for a long enough time to infect another person.

Loss of taste and smell may be an early coronavirus symptom. Research indicates that your sense of smell, and taste, could diminish by day 3 of being infected. Data points to up to 80% of positive Covid-19 patients reporting some amount of loss of taste or smell.

Smoking may increase the risk of Covid-19 transmission because of face and mouth contact and, sometimes, the sharing of mouth pieces. However, the data on whether Covid-19 occurs more frequently in smokers or non-smokers is inconclusive. Nevertheless, smokers are more susceptible to poor Covid-19 outcomes because they may have reduced lung capacity or lung disease.

As the virus spreads it develops small changes, and the Indian “double mutant” or the B.1.617 variant carries two mutations at position 452 and 484 of the spike protein. The L452R mutation and E484Q were previously observed independently. However, in the “double mutant” they occur together.

Covid-19 antibodies are Y-shaped proteins that fight the Covid-19 virus and are produced within days to weeks of you being infected. Studies suggest that it takes about 2 weeks for most patients to develop an antibody response. Further, it takes, on average, 1 to 2 weeks after the start of Covid-19 symptoms for antibodies to reach to a detectable level.

There are no diet restrictions to note when recovering from Covid-19. It is important to keep the body healthy and stay well fed. Eat a nutritious meal rich in protein, vitamins, minerals, and stay hydrated. Drink at least 2 to 3 litres of water daily, while ensuring to keep stress levels at a minimum. You can also take steam inhalation 2 to 3 times a day to help with recovery.