Bothasig’s backlog in Covid-19 tests

A total of 983 people have been tested for Covid-19 since march at the Bothasig clinic, according to the provincial Department of Health. Residents have complained about the long wait for test results at the clinic.

A Bothasig woman says she is unhappy with how long it has taken her to get her Covid-19 test results from the Bothasig clinic.

The woman, who does not want to be named, said she had gone to the clinic on Monday May 11 for a runny tummy.

“I had a runny tummy and wanted to see the doctor but the nurse screened me for Covid-19 and said I had to get the test done,” she said.

She was told to call the clinic for her results by the end of that week and to self-isolate until her results came in.

But to date, she said, she had not received her results. She said she had called the clinic daily only to be told they were still waiting for the results.

“I have not been at work for two weeks because of my pending results. I am the only bread-winner, and I’m not getting paid for this time off. They need to jack up the system at Bothasig clinic because this is not on,” she said.

She said she did not feel sick and had no Covid-19 symptoms, although she had been sweating a bit at the clinic but had put that down to her runny stomach.

On Monday she was given a letter of clearance after completing the self-isolation period but is still waiting for her results.

Meanwhile, an 80-year-old Bothasig man is also waiting for his results after getting tested on the same day as the woman. According to the man’s tenant, who called Tabletalk on his behalf, the man visited the clinic with his caretaker for a sore back and sore throat but the nurse told him he should also be tested for Covid-19

“He came home with a letter to self-isolate and was told his results would be in by the end of the week but he still hasn’t got them. He’s starting to lose his memory and doesn’t always know what’s going on so now he sits in his room frustrated not understanding why he can’t move around,” the tenant said.

Provincial Department of Health spokeswoman, Maret Lesch, said testing capacity was under severe strain, both in the public and the private sector.

The department, she said, had asked the National Health Laboratory Service to increase capacity so that testing could be sped up.

“When a person tests positive, the goal is to immediately move in, identify their contacts, screen and test where necessary and then quarantine and isolate.

“The delay in results delays this process and puts pressure on these systems when results are released in larger batches as they process the backlogs,” she said.

Since March, 983 people were tested for Covid-19 at Bothasig clinic, she said.