Most of the people alive today have never experienced a pandemic of this magnitude. COVID-19 has infected millions and taken lives in the hundreds of thousands. Countries all over the world are struggling to control the situation with many resorting to strict lockdowns to limit the spread. However, people cannot live like this forever. Governments cannot feed their populations indefinitely while most remain in their homes. Performing widespread Covid-19 test processing is seen as another critical element in managing this pandemic while the vaccine is in development. Testing will allow everyone to:
Learn the True Extent of the Infection
Policies should be based on hard data. Otherwise, governments will just be shooting in the dark. They need to know the exact number of infected persons. Too little testing will only provide a false sense of security. People will think that there are few cases in their region when the reality is that there are actually a lot of them. They might ignore warnings and flout social distancing recommendations in the false belief that there is no danger. It is always best to face the truth head-on.
Monitor the Progress of the Curve
This virus is highly infectious. It can spread across a population very quickly if there are no preventive measures in place. It can still be dangerous even with policies like keeping non-essential workers at home, suspending classes for children, instituting social distancing in public areas, and establishing checkpoints to ensure compliance. These might help reduce the spread but policymakers need to know how effective these measures are through numbers and graphs. Knowing how many new cases and deaths are recorded per day allows citizens to monitor the progress of the curve. Is it flattening at all? They’ll know whether their sacrifices have been worth it or not.
Identify Hotspots and Free Zones
Testing should be performed in every region at a large enough scale that policymakers can identify hotpots immediately. If they can drill things down to the exact sections of the cities, then it might be possible to open up the rest of the area which is known to be free from infection. The surgical approach will reduce the economic impact of quarantines since only a smaller number need to be isolated. It will also prevent another outbreak after places open up.
Access to a Covid-19 test should be easy for the masses to manage this pandemic.