Understanding COVID-19



What is COVID-19?


Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Most people who fall sick with COVID-19 will experience mild to moderate symptoms and recover without special treatment. However, some will become seriously ill and require medical attention.



How does COVID-19 spread?


The virus can spread from an infected person’s mouth or nose in small liquid particles when they cough, sneeze, speak, sing or breathe. These particles range from larger respiratory droplets to smaller aerosols.

You can be infected by breathing in the virus if you are near someone who has COVID-19, or by touching a contaminated surface and then your eyes, nose or mouth. The virus spreads more easily indoors and in crowded settings.



How can we combat the spread of COVID-19?


The three methods of combating the transmission of COVID-19 include regular COVID-19 testing, taking precautions such as social distancing and the wearing of masks, and vaccination against the virus.

It is vitally important that vaccine roll-out programmes take place, and that individuals opt-in for vaccinations, as this will play a huge role in stemming the spread of the virus. Equally important is the need for individuals to play their part, by wearing masks in public, sanitising frequently and maintaining social distancing protocols in all situations.

Finally, regular testing must take place to ensure that individuals who are infected can isolate, and that contact for individuals affected by the COVID-19 virus is reduced. As many individuals who are infected with the virus remain asymptomatic, they can unknowingly spread the virus to those around them. This is why regular testing must take place; to ensure that those who are infected can safely isolate themselves to protect their loved ones and those around them.





What testing methods are available?


The two most common types of COVID-19 tests include PCR tests and lateral-flow (or rapid) tests.


PCR tests are highly sensitive and are therefore considered a gold standard when it comes to testing against COVID-19. However, there are several drawbacks to PCR tests:


They can be prone to tester variation and are difficult to access. They are only useful in identifying symptomatic cases and carry a high false negative rate. They are expensive, and there is a delay in receiving results, as they must be processed in a lab.


This is why lateral flow COVID-19 testing kits play such an important role in opening up the economy. With results available in only 15 minutes, they can be used on-the-day of events, in the build-up to travel, or in industries where individuals must work in close proximity to one another such as mining or construction, schools or factories. They are also considerably cheaper than their PCR alternatives.


At BHA-Medical, we believe that regular lateral flow testing will play a vital role in stemming the rate of infections – and we have seen this method of testing help open up industries in the UK.




BHA Medical Head Office

+44 (0) 2045 345 598

salesuk@bha-medical.com

www.bha-medical.com/covid-19-test-kits


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