Frustrated wait for coronavirus results

April 30, 2020

A 19-year-old who tested positive for COVID-19 says he is now at his breaking point as he languishes in an isolation facility awaiting a test result that could confirm he no longer has the coronavirus.

The patient, who is from Clarendon, was among the first batch of workers from the Alorica call centre in Portmore to test positive. He said that he first had a sore throat, then a migraine, serious pains in his eyes, lumps on his arms, loss of taste and smell and shortness of breath. He said he no longer has those symptoms.

" I did a test two weeks ago and the result came back last Saturday and that was negative. I did another test and I am currently waiting on the results but the process is very long. I am tired of being at one place," he said.

Fever-reducing medication

The Ministry of Health says that 396 persons have tested positive for the novel coronavirus since the first case was identified on the island on March 10. Some 29 persons have recovered. Recovery from COVID-19 is measured by the absence of fever, with no use of fever-reducing medication as well as two negative swab tests on consecutive days.

The patient said he understands that workers from the call centre and those they came in contact with are now being tested, but is hoping that patients such as himself, awaiting a second negative test result, would be prioritised for even a day.

"The nurses and doctors treat us very very good here, I can't even lie. They are always checking up on us, feeding us and monitoring our exercise. But you get tired of being in the same place just waiting ... When I ask when I will get the results, I hear (the next day) and I think they said that the results can take sometimes three days to come back."

"Another patient got her first negative last Saturday and by Monday she got her second negative and went home Monday night. I just want to be kept posted. If positive or negative fine, but me just nuh want to be here so just lying down every day waiting," he said.

Medical Officer of Health, Dr Nadine Williams, said the timeline for results vary and there was a backlog of tests that could have impacted turn around time.

Other News Stories