Coronavirus Test in Dubai, UAE: When and Where to Get Tested for Coronavirus
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Coronavirus Test in Dubai, UAE: When and Where to Get Tested for Coronavirus

Coronavirus Test in Dubai, UAE: Coronavirus cases in the UAE are at around 113 right now. If you feel you are infected, these are the health centres you can go to, to get yourself checked

While there is a fine line between the common cold and coronavirus, mass hysteria has resulted in people panicking all over the world and assuming they may have been hit by the illness. An increase in the COVID-19 affected individuals in the UAE has inevitably led to people (read: hypochondriacs) with blocked noses and sore throats worrying unnecessarily, running to hospitals to get checked for the infection and demanding to be tested. It is better to be safe than sorry, they believe and while we could not agree more, it is also essential to know that self-isolation is recommended at this point in time instead of immediately heading to a doctor. UAE is taking various preventive measures to stop the spread of the virus. It is also important to know and understand the difference between a regular flu and the coronavirus, for while their symptoms may be similar, they are not the same. Bottom line: If you are feeling flu-ish, this does not mean that you have the coronavirus. In light of this, the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) has issued detailed rules about when to seek medical help and make an appointment at any of the public hospitals and Primary Health Centres.

How to book a COVID-19 test:

The way to go about it is that if someone is suffering from high temperature, cough, cold, shortness of breath, has come in contact with a COVID-19 patient or holds a travel history to any country of concern, then he/she has made the cut to be tested. Nevertheless, the said individual can first practice self-isolation at home and then schedule an appointment by calling on the DHA helpline: 800342.

While at the hospital, this is what you should do:

Once they reach the hospital, they must inform the reception that they have symptoms of the coronavirus. Every patient will need to show their insurance card. Doctors have requested patients who visit private hospitals even with mild symptoms to take precautionary measures to protect others including healthcare workers. Those suffering from fever, cough, sore throat and shortness of breath must wear a mask and maintain personal hygiene. This is because the health of doctors, nurses and other hospital staff is extremely crucial at this point too.

“They should be careful and avoid contact with others. It is important that the patient has to report to the authorities concerned and get immediate treatment. In the UAE, the person suffering from any of the symptoms of the viral infection may call the helpline number and follow the instructions,” Gulf News quoted Dr Rohit Kumar as saying. The patient must also visit the hospital in their personal vehicle instead of using public transport. “The suspected patients would be directly taken to an isolation room and would be treated there,” he mentioned.

You will only be eligible for the COVID-19 test if you meet the symptom criteria.

Dr Abdulla Al Rasasi, head of the preventive medicine section at the DHA's public health protection department, told Khaleej Times, "Patients should be suspected to have the infection only if they present upper or lower respiratory symptoms, with or without fever and have travelled to one of the high-risk countries in the preceding 14 days; or have cared for or come into contact with an individual or animal known or strongly suspected to have Covid-19; or have severe acute respiratory infections with no other lab result that explains the illness." It is impossible for healthcare facilities to test each and every person at this time.

Here are DHA Health Centres to head to if needed:

Al Barsha Health Centre in Al Barsha 3
Nad Al Hamar Health Cnetre in Nad Al Hamar
Al Safa Health Center in Al Safa in Al Wasi
Al Badas Health Center in Al Badaa in Sheikh Zayed Road 1
Al Mankhool Health Center in Al Mankhool
Al Lusaily Health Center in Al Lusaily
Al Khawaneej Health Center in Al Khawaneej
Al Towar Health Center in Al Towar 1
Nad Al Shaba Health Center in Nad Al Shaba
Al Mamzar Health Center in Al Mamzar
Al Mizhar Health Center in Al Mizhar 1
Senior Happiness Centre in Al Mamzar
Za’abeel Health Center in Za’abeel 1
Make sure to check the operating hours of each facility before visiting.

This is how the COVID-19 test works:

The healthcare worker takes swab samples from the suspected patient's nose, throat and sputum. After the swab test, the patient is kept in the isolation facility at the hospital until the result of the swab test is released, which roughly takes 24 hours. If the test results turn out to be positive, the DHA would send its special ambulance and healthcare officials to get the patient's immediate family, friends or whoever he/she has interacted with in the recent past. They will then be screened and tested as well. If they do not show any Covid-19 signs, they will be asked to self-isolate at home.

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