Corona Chronicles July 2020
Predications that the pandemic would be under control by July have turned out to be nothing more than an impossible dream. However, with the easing of lockdown more social activities are opening up. If people adhere to wearing face coverings and other protective measures, there may be a chance to see what the new ‘normal’ might look like. Although retail sales are higher than in the sam period last year, the bulk of trading has been online. High Street venues are closing or struggling to survive.
Professor Tim Spector, head of the research team at Kings College London tells participants to be proud of being part of the largest scientific study in the world. I am one of over 4 million participants who give daily reports on the state of their health and COVID-19 status. You can join the study here
As well as joining the COVID Symptom Study, I also enrolled with another piece of research that compares tradtional swab test with a newly developed saliva test for the coronavirus. The instructions for completing the tests seemed clear and straight forward; however, in practice, it proved more challenging. Apart from the tests you had to construct a box from a flat piece of cardboard. Nightmare images of failed attempts to put together flat-packed furniture sprang to mind. Imagine my great sense of achievement when I successfully created a functional container for the samples. Another stumbling block was the amount of saliva required for the test. When I appeared that all my spitting wasn’t even covering the bottom of the tube, suddenly, I noticed the cap halfway down collecting my saliva…I had nearly reached the required amount.
The handling of the test from application to submission was a model of superb efficiency and utmost competence. I booked the courier before doing the tests and placed the packed samples in the fridge ready for collection. The doorbell rang before I’d even finished breakfast!
Results of swab test – negative.
Saliva tests require additional information, which I have since completed. Hopefully, if the outcome of the study is as accurate as predicted…this could prove a game changer in testing large sections of the entire population.