COVID-19 Testing And Vaccine

Monroe Testing/Vaccine Location

Ciara Fortier, Staff Writer

The Coronavirus (SARS-COVID-2) has made everyone jump through hoops to stay healthy and safe. Wearing masks when going to stores, social distancing, and sanitizing everything possible. Making it difficult to see family and friends. People would have to receive nasal swab tests and quarantine for about two weeks if they either traveled or tested positive.

People at first weren’t too sure what to think about the testing. A swab up the nose for 10 seconds on both sides, is something that you don’t just do every day. So it would be quite painful for people, causing tears and discomfort afterwards. When I got tested twice back in December, I had to do the nasal swab myself. It was a little uncomfortable, I’ll admit, but it wasn’t all that bad.

What most people might not realize is that there is also two different tests. There are PCR and Antigen COVID-19 tests. PCR, or Polymerase Chain Reaction, COVID testing is where they test to find genetic material (like RNA) that can be found within days of contraction and no symptoms are developed. The other is an Antigen test, which looks for the proteins that COVID makes while reproducing within the body. The difference between these is the speed of the results. Antigen results will show within hours (and is a cheaper test to run), while PCR can take days for results.

Now that we have not only one, but three vaccines available, people (if 16 or older) are able to receive a vaccine. In fact, there are students at our school, including me, who have already either gotten one, or both, dosages of the COVID-19 vaccine. But I recommend doing a little research into which one you decide to get. Because while they are all meant to do the same thing, they are all a little different. Making sure that you get the vaccine that you want.

If you want to look at where you can try and find the nearest vaccine location, click here. Or if you would like to find the nearest testing location.