Where to Take Free COVID Test in Moscow
Moscow has more than 155,000 cases. So to ensure the health of yourself and those around you, always pay attention to your own health status. Currently, express testing for COVID-19 has been organized in Moscow without an appointment at certain locations. This is very professional and completely free. Let's know more about this with Nguyen Ha.
What is an express-test?
Express testing helps to identify infection in asymptomatic carriers, and early detection of COVID-19 allows for earlier treatment and reduces the likelihood of a severe course of the disease.
Express-test is a test method that helps detect proteins on the surface of the SARS-CoV-2 virus (antigen test) or detect antibodies caused by the body's immune system's response to COVID-19 infection (antibody test).
Differences between Antibody and Antigen
Antibodies are used to refer to substances produced by the body when it recognizes an organism's invasion in order to destroy them and protect itself. Although everyone has this ability, people with stronger immune systems are more likely to form antibodies.
Antigen is used to refer to substances that are recognized by the immune system when a foreign agent enters and produces corresponding antibodies. Specifically, antibodies can be cellular or fluid, characterized by the ability of an immune response or to conjugate antigens.
The antigen response can be negative or positive. Negative means that the body exposed to the antigen will tolerate it (immune cells will not respond to make antibodies). Positive means that the body produces immunoglobulin to fight the antigen causing it to produce antibodies.
Distinguishing COVID antibodies and antigens in the SARS-CoV-2 test
Antibody and Antigen Covid testing is a test done with the aim of finding the presence of two things that the immune system responds to and responds to when suffering from Covid. Specifically:
*Antigen test: Used to diagnose whether a person is infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The test uses Real-time PCR technique, the sample to be tested often is nasopharyngeal fluid. Currently, only PCR is capable of accurately detecting the existence of SARS-CoV-2 virus inside the body based on the mechanism of finding antigens. T-PCR technique is considered the gold standard in the diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 with 100% specificity and 99% sensitivity. Although the test takes a long time (4 - 6 hours), the false-positive rate is almost zero. In addition to RT-PCR, there is also a rapid test to help find viral antibodies in the blood to determine a person's ability to infect the SARS-CoV-2 virus. If antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 virus are found, it means that there has been previous exposure or is currently suffering from Covid-19.
*Antibody test: This is a test that determines whether antibodies are present in the blood to find the virus. Antibodies here are produced by the body to fight the virus, it exists in the blood after a period of exposure to the viral component or has been infected. Antibodies are detected through two techniques:
+ ELISA technique: testing time is 1 - 5 hours, helping to quantify antibody levels in the blood.
+ Immunochromatographic technique (fast test): in just 15-20 minutes, the test results will be available, capable of finding out the existence of antibodies through the qualitative determination of antibodies.
Advantages and disadvantages of Express test
- Time for results quickly from 15-30 minutes.
- Low cost.
- Simple test technique, easy to do it yourself.
- Suitable for zoning and screening suspected cases on a large scale.
- The sensitivity is poor, so the rate of “false positives - negatives” is relatively high.
- With positive results of this method, it is necessary to confirm by Realtime PCR.
- Humidity and temperature of the test site can affect the results.
- If the sample is mixed with blood, it will affect the test result.
Because of the symptoms of seasonal flu for a long time, my friend and I decided to do a quick test at metro "Turgenevskaya", right next to the ticket office, exit 3-5. The test area is enclosed, almost completely isolated. It includes 2 information desks, 2 test sampling rooms and a large lobby with seats to wait for results. Medical staff do not allow too many people to enter the test area at the same time to avoid cross-contamination.
Because I had pre-registered at home, after showing the QR code at the information desk, I was allowed to enter the area to take the test sample. Everything happened very quickly and there was no pain at all. I was then instructed to sit and wait for the results. About 10-15 minutes later, the medical staff came out and asked for my information and reported the results to me. They said: “Everything is fine, your result is negative”.
Unfortunately, my friends tested and received positive results. They were kept for a PCR test. We were quite surprised because this is free while PCR testing in medical centers usually costs 1700-3000 rubles. After one day one of them received the results via SMS that the result was positive. After receiving information that my friend had tested positive for the PCR test, the dormitory manager and the dorm's social care teacher have been concerned and asked regularly about our health situation. They assisted us in calling the city doctor and clinic. Then we were taken to the city clinic for lung capacity, chest x-ray, electrocardiogram and blood test. Because they knew that I had a negative rapid test result and concluded that the pneumonia virus was not found in my results, I could return to the condition of self-isolation for 14 days. But one of my friends was admitted to the hospital and the chest x-ray reported that his lungs were 5-10% damaged. He had recovered well and was moved in isolation due to a negative PCR test. He lost his taste buds for a while after COVID. Now he has recovered very well and is completely healthy. Anyway, we feel lucky because we tested and discovered it in time.
I hope to have shared with you some useful information. Hope you all stay healthy and take good care of yourself!