Coronavirus testing opens to everyone in Netherlands with symptoms

Doctor in protective gear taking a nasal swab from a man
Doctor in protective gear taking a nasal swab from a manzstockphotosDepositPhotosDeposit Photos

From today, everyone with even mild symptoms that could indicate a coronavirus infection can make an appointment with health service GGD to be tested. Those with symptoms like a fever, coughing, sneezing or shortness of breath can call 0800-1202 to make an appointment. The number is free to call and will be available between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. daily. 

Most GGD regions expect to be able to do between 500 and 900 tests per day at first, reports after surveying the 25 GGD regions. The capacity can be increased if necessary, they said. On Monday, the number of tests done will likely be lower as the GGDs are just starting up, a spokesperson for GGD GHOR said to the newspaper. 

After being tested, you'll have to isolate yourself at home until you get the results. The GGDs aim to give results within 48 hours of the test. If you test positive, you'll have to quarantine at home for two weeks. Your housemates will be asked to do the same as a precaution, and urged to contact the GGD if they start showing symptoms. 

While the GGDs will be doing the lion's share of the tests, general practitioners and hospitals in some regions will also perform coronavirus tests. The aim is for the Netherlands to be able to do 30 thousand tests per day if necessary..