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Covid-19 Self Test MUST Be Done 1-2 Hours Before Gathering, Not Earlier

Covid-19 Self Test MUST Be Done 1-2 Hours Before Gathering, Not Earlier

Omicron variants have a shorter incubation time than other variants.

Anne Dorall

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The government has only recently announced that year-end festivities and gatherings are limited to only small family groups, not large mass parties.

Additionally, every attendee must conduct a Covid-19 self-test before the gathering, which (naturally) must show negative.

READ MORE: Only Small Family Gatherings Allowed For Year-End Holidays, Covid-19 Self-Test Mandatory

Omicron variant incubates much faster

Billy Quilty, a infectious disease epidemiologist based in London, took to Twitter to showcase exactly how fast the infection sets in.

In the Tweet, he shows 4 self-test kits, each taken just mere hours apart.

The first was taken in the morning, the second at lunchtime, the third in the evening. The fourth was taken in the morning the next day, which showed a clear positive line.

Within 12 hours, Billy’s test results went from negative to positive: if he had merely taken the test the morning before a gathering, he could have been spreading the virus unknowingly to everyone who attended it.

Hence, he urges everyone to only do their self-test right before leaving for a gathering.

However, sharp-eyed Twitter users have noted that the third test as shown in the image does actually show a positive result as there is a very faint line of red if you look carefully.

The test already has detected the proteins, and test kit instructions note that ANY LINE, no matter how faint, is considered a positive result.

Have a few of the self-test kits at home this festive season.
(Credit: Malay Mail)

Self-test 1-2 hours before, no earlier

New findings show that the Omicron variant have a much shorter incubation period than previous strains, meaning that they show infectivity much quicker.

Essentially, this also means that self-tests taken 1 or 2 days before an event are no longer enough.

While previously self-test kits can be taken a day before, it is now encouraged to do the self-test a mere 1-2 hours before the event for the most accurate result.

This is particularly important for the upcoming festivities to prevent an outbreak.

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