The across-the-board testing of citizens of Slovakia should be voluntary, Aktuality.sk reported. Coalition leaders agreed on this on Monday evening.
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The Defence Ministry, which is in charge of testing, identified 5,000 sampling places for the across-the-board testing of inhabitants of Slovakia linked with the novel coronavirus.
The main part of the testing should take place between October 30 and November 1 and from November 6 to 8.
COVID-positive people will be isolated at home
The Defence Ministry said that the testing will be carried out by staff with a healthcare education and not on trained soldiers.
“The army has basic steps prepared for testing; they are being specified now and consulted with the healthcare workers and municipalities,” said Martina Kovaľ Kakaščíková, as quoted by the TASR newswire.
After people arrive to the sampling place, they will fill out several forms, as stated by the law.
Then, healthcare workers will take a swab from the nasopharynx, the ministry said. Following the swab, the person tested will wait in an area designated by the staff for 15 to 30 minutes for the results, which will be provided in a sealed envelope. Together with the results of the tests, the person tested will receive instructions on what to do. Those who test positive must go into home isolation immediately.
“We emphasise that the stated information is only the basic plan which will be fine-tuned according to the statements of lawyers and healthcare workers,” Kovaľ Kakaščíková said, as quoted by TASR.
Soldiers will ensure logistic part of the operation
From Tuesday onwards, professional soldiers will contact and visit the representatives of municipalities to find out the possibilities to conduct the testing.
“The priority is to do the exploration or pilot part of the testing scheduled between October 23 and 25 in the most critical districts, so in Námestovo, Dolný Kubín, Tvrdošín and Bardejov,” the spokesperson noted for TASR. “Other representatives of the municipalities will be contacted later in a similar way.”
All of the staff conducting the testing will be tested before the operation.
The sampling places will be equipped with disinfection and personal protective equipment.
Within the organisation of the operation, the Defence Ministry will ensure the logistic part of the operation linked with the distribution of material and people. It will also offer managing and communication infrastructure, ensuring there is a net of regional headquarters based on military crew. Currently, there are 16 of them and they will manage the sampling places within their scope of activity.
There will also be sampling teams dispatched to immobile people or small communities where it would not be effective to establish an entire sampling place.
Pilot testing in Orava and Bardejov
About 200 military healthcare workers, 100 healthcare workers employed by the firefighting and rescue service and healthcare workers from the civilian sector will control the sampling number during the pilot testing in Orava and Bardejov.
“The Defence Ministry is negotiating with the Health Ministry and looking for a common and practicable solution,” said Kovaľ Kakaščíková.