High-risk contacts will also be tested on day 1 and 7 from Monday

High-risk contacts will also be tested on day 1 and 7 from Monday
Credit: Belga

Everyone who has had a high-risk contact will also have to be tested for Covid-19 on day 1 and 7 of their quarantine from Monday, health officials announced during a press conference on Friday.

Belgium’s interministerial conference on public health recently decided to change the country’s testing policy again, making sure that more people get tested, said virologist and interfederal Covid-19 spokesperson Steven Van Gucht.

“Until now, this test on day 1 was only necessary for returning travellers, but from Monday 25 January it will be extended to all high-risk contacts,” he said.

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The change is “a very important improvement” to contain the further spread of the virus, according to Van Gucht, which is now feasible because the process to notify people is now largely automated, using text messages.

“This means that the burden on GPs has been reduced,” he said. “Additionally, we also have sufficient testing capacity to be able to analyse the samples sufficiently quickly.”

“We call on everyone to get tested as soon as possible, even in the event of mild symptoms,” Van Gucht stressed.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times

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