How many Bucharesters will be actually tested for COVID-19?

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Bucharesters will be tested for the COVID-19, but not the entire population of the Capital city, as former Health minister had announced on Wednesday night, but only a sample of 10,514 people from 5 different age groups, the manager of the “Matei Bals” Institute for Infectious Diseases, Adrian Streinu-Cercel announced on Thursday.

The testing will start on Monday, March 30. Bucharest City Hall will buy 4,000 tests, while the 6 district city halls will purchase 1,000 tests each, as Bucharest general mayor, Gabriela Firea announced.

The sample has been established based on an estimation that Bucharest has 2 million residents. There will be five age groups: those aged from 0 to 19, from 20 to 44yo, from 45 to 64yo, from 65 to 79yo and over 80.

Doctor Streinu Cercel explained that 80% of those who get infected with COVID-19 develop mild and medium forms of the disease, which they are not even aware of and thus, they infect other people who might develop though severe forms.

The manager of “Matei Bals” Institute said the selected citizens for testing will be announced through the leaders of the tenants committees and that the testing teams will not enter the people’s houses, but the citizens selected to be tested will be called to come outside in front of their apartment buildings or houses.

There will be two tests, one to detect the potential presence of the new coronavirus at the time of the testing, and another one to detect antibodies, to see how many people have already had the infection.

The results of the tests will be obtained in 15-30 minutes and will be sent to those citizens by SMS on their phone. The accuracy of the tests exceeds 98%, as Streinu Cercel said.

If a person tests positive for COVID-19, all people living in that block of flats will be placed under quarantine and tested. At the end of the quarantine time (in the last two days), they will be tested again.

The doctor added that people can refuse to be tested, but they will thus “lose a chance to check their health state.”

188 have tested positive for coronavirus in Bucharest so far, with 116 of them in District 2 of the Capital.

District 1- 24 cases
District 2 – 116
District 3- 6 cases
District 4- 11 cases
District 5- 3 cases
District 6- 14 cases
Ilfov – 14 cases.

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