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Getting a test for covid variant ‘Pirola’

Getting a test for covid variant ‘Pirola’
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Should I get tested for covid before my vacation or business trip?

With all the media anxiety about a new covid variant, you may be wondering if you need to have a negative covid test result to fly. Or you might want to get tested on your return to the US for your own peace of mind. Either way, at Global Travel Clinics, we can help.

What is the ‘Pirola’ variant?

Immunologists are finding new covid variants all the time, but occasionally one arises that causes a bit of a stir. A few cases of a variant called BA.2.86 have caught the attention of immunologists because of mutations on the spike proteins that the virus uses to get into cells. The media has nicknamed it ‘Pirola’. Read more about BA.2.86 in The British Medical Journal.

You can rest assured that our covid tests are reliable for all variants.

Do I need a covid test to board my flight?

Most countries have stepped down their requirements that arriving passengers show a negative result from a recent covid test. But there may be some exceptions; and it’s important to remember that border requirements can change very rapidly and without notice. We recommend that you check with a reliable source about entry requirements as you plan your trip abroad. Some reliable ways to get information about border restrictions and requirements are:

Business travelers can inquire with their employer’s occupational health service.

Where can I get same-day results covid testing near me?

At Global Travel Clinics we offer a travel covid test service in convenient downtown locations. Check our clinics list for your nearest travel health center and make an appointment for a traveler’s covid test. We can definitely help with last-minute covid tests – so if you’re traveling soon, make a travel health appointment right now.

Do you have any tips for avoiding covid infection while traveling?

Covid is not the only disease spread by respiratory droplets. You can also catch measles and meningitis from breathing an infected person’s respiratory droplets.

There are vaccines available to reduce your chances of getting infected with covid, measles and meningitis. So before traveling, ensure you are fully up to date with all your boosters. Make a travel health appointment six to eight weeks before you travel to find out what vaccines are most suitable for your trip abroad.

Not all respiratory illnesses are vaccine-preventable; and you do need to support your immune system by reducing your risk of infection. But you can do this with a few good habits like washing your hands often and avoiding touching your face. It’s also important to cover coughs and sneezes to keep respiratory droplets out of the air.

Some travelers choose to wear a mask in an enclosed space.

There are some activities that will increase your exposure to respiratory diseases, including covid. These include attending gatherings such as weddings, funerals and festivals. You might also be more exposed to respiratory illnesses in mass transit, and when staying with relatives or friends or using homestay accommodation.