RT-PCR is short for “Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction” or PCR assays used to detect Sars-CoV-2 or the Coronavirus.
PCR tests can be used to examine and detect if a person has an ongoing infection with COVID-19. What the PCR test does is it examines whether there is genetic material from the Sars CoV-2 virus that is causing the infection.
How do RT-PCR tests work?
In short, it can be said that the basic principle is based on tracing the genome, DNA / RNA, of an infectious agent. This is done by mixing so-called primers, which are specially designed DNA together with chemicals and nucleotides. These primers then act as targeting robots to find the infectious agent.
Together with the mix of chemicals, they then copy the DNA strand in a sufficiently large number of copies for them to be measured. The prerequisite for success is that you know what you are looking for because the primers are designed to find a specific infectious agent. The PCR test method can be used to detect very small amounts of the infectious agent precisely thanks to the copying. It can be said that the PCR tests, as a method, to some extent simulate the cell’s way of making cell copies of the chromosomes’ DNA chains during cell division. The PCR test is thus a molecular amplification method used to detect the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
How to take the test?
The test is taken by swabbing in the throat and/or posterior nasal wall with a soft, thin, flexible stick with a small tip. The test does not hurt but can feel uncomfortable for some.
How long does it take to get an answer?
A PCR test contains several steps and it, therefore, takes longer to get an answer than from an antigen test. Thanks to the fact that we have our own laboratory, we can give test results on the same day. At the same time as you receive test results, you will also receive a travel certificate signed by a doctor.
RT – PCR tests or “Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction” is thus the molecularly diagnosed test that most countries require for entry. If you are traveling and need a travel certificate, you can easily check here when you can take the test before your trip at the earliest and latest. Also, remember to check the latest rules for the country you are traveling to as it is always the traveler’s responsibility to have the right test within the right time frame.