As the number of COVID-19 cases increases in NH, testing is crucial to control spread

The number of COVID-19 cases in New Hampshire is on the rise, but some residents say they are still confused by testing guidelines. New Hampshire has an average of more than 500 new cases reported each day, most since Valentine’s Day. But the number of hospital patients with COVID-19 is less than it was at the end of last week. Rapid tests on COVID-19 are now widely available, including liquor stores in New Hampshire. But at this time of the pandemic, many say they are still confused when to test and are concerned about the accuracy of the tests. “Testing resources and testing recommendations have always been a source of confusion for people in general,” said Dr. Benjamin Chan, a state epidemiologist. Even doctors say it is difficult to follow test recommendations as strategies continue to change. Although PCR tests remain the gold standard for accuracy, Chan said the rapid tests are also fairly accurate as long as they are taken at the right time. is Chan. He said anyone showing symptoms should take a quick test right away. The number of cases is growing across the state, but hospitalizations are still relatively low compared to previous jumps, such as in January when a record high of 433 patients tested positive for COVID-19. Still, some are still worried about the constant threat. “Yeah, I’m worried about that because it’s in the air,” Lloyd Coleman of Manchester said. “You have to do it, and people won’t say, ‘Oh, I have COVID.’ Doctors said this increase is likely to be different from the previous one. “Given the increase we’ve seen in the last few weeks, this is likely to be a more limited increase and potentially shorter duration than we’ve seen in the past,” Chan said. Trying to control the spread of the virus is still crucial, doctors said. “We need to stop the transfers,” said Dr. Jose Mercado, head of response to COVID-19 for Dartmouth Health. “That’s what will prevent more variants from coming out.” Chan said the omicron BA.2 subvariant is still the most prominent strain, and while doctors agree that the current rise is likely to be less serious, they still hope people take it seriously.

The number of COVID-19 cases in New Hampshire is on the rise, but some residents say they are still confused by testing guidelines.

New Hampshire has an average of more than 500 new cases reported each day, most since Valentine’s Day. But the number of hospital patients with COVID-19 is lower than it was at the end of last week.

Rapid tests on COVID-19 are now widely available, including liquor stores in New Hampshire. But at this time of the pandemic, many say they are still confused when to test and are concerned about the accuracy of the tests.

“Testing resources and testing recommendations have always been a source of confusion for people in general,” said Dr. Benjamin Chan, a state epidemiologist.

Even doctors say it is difficult to follow test recommendations as strategies continue to change. Although PCR tests remain the gold standard for accuracy, Chan said the rapid tests are also fairly accurate as long as they are taken at the right time.

“We recommend that someone seek testing perhaps around the fifth day after known exposure to identify the infection early,” Chan said.

He said anyone showing symptoms should take a quick test right away.

The number of cases is growing across the state, but hospitalizations are still relatively low compared to previous jumps, such as in January when a record high of 433 patients tested positive for COVID-19.

Still, some are still worried about the threat that is underway.

“Yes, I’m worried about it because it’s in the air,” said Lloyd Coleman of Manchester. “You have to do it, and people won’t say, ‘Oh, I have COVID.’

Doctors said this increase is likely to be different from the previous one.

“Given the increase we’ve seen in the last few weeks, this is likely to be a more limited increase and potentially shorter duration than we’ve seen in the past,” Chan said.

Trying to control the spread of the virus remains crucial, doctors said.

“We need to stop the transfers,” said Dr. Jose Mercado, head of response to COVID-19 for Dartmouth Health. “That’s what will prevent more variants from emerging.”

Chan said the omicron BA.2 subvariant is still the most prominent strain, and while doctors agree that the current rise is likely to be less serious, they still hope people take it seriously.

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