People with corona complaints are less willing to be tested. Research by RIVM and the GGDs shows that 12 percent of the group with complaints have registered for a test.
This low percentage is partly due to people saying that the complaints seem familiar to them. Four out of ten think they suffer from asthma, hay fever or a common cold. People also want to look at it for a while.
More than 68 percent of the group without complaints say they want to be tested for corona-related complaints. But once it does, that percentage drops to 28 percent.
Looks like a cold
RIVM concludes that it is plausible that a large proportion of people who do not have themselves tested do not have covid-19. The researchers base this on the low percentage of positive tests.
If someone clearly recognizes the complaints as hay fever or a smoker’s cough, testing according to RIVM is not necessary. In other cases it is different. “It is important to know that the complaints are indistinguishable from the common cold,” says researcher Marijn de Bruin of RIVM. “The advice is to just have a test done for mild complaints.”
Still to the store
There is also large support for the measure to stay at home with corona-like complaints. 87 percent of the respondents without complaints think this is a good thing. But when it comes to the point, it turns out to be difficult for people to stick to it.
Almost half of the group with complaints say they find it difficult to follow the self-isolation advice. For example, 80 percent go shopping despite the complaints, 40 percent do not stay home from work.
This is worrying, RIVM believes, especially because the number of infections seems to be increasing slightly. “Staying home with complaints and testing takes a lot from people,” concludes the health institute. “It’s important that people with symptoms don’t stay home and test until symptoms get more severe.”
The respondents who have been tested do so because they want security, want to protect other people or so that they can return to work.
More than 50,000 people participated in the research by RIVM and the GGDs.