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Getting a COVID test in Berlin

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Can anyone give advice from their direct experience of having been tested for COVID in Berlin? I looked, but the 258 page Coronavirus thread is simply too large to find this information easily.


Our 8 year-old went back to school a week ago and we got a phone call from her teacher yesterday to inform us that one of her class-mates has tested positive for Coronavirus. Her class has been cancelled, naturally, and we will probably have have to go into isolation - and endure the miseries of even more home-teaching :-(


I’m not sure if the whole school closes in this situation but I expect that things will proceed according to a predetermined strategy. Up to this point they’ve been pretty careful with dividing the classes, distancing and wearing masks.


The teacher said that we’ll get more information on Monday but I don’t know exactly how much we’ll learn or how quickly things will happen. My concern is that our whole family get tested as soon as possible so that we can get information to others that we may have been in contact with during the last week. We also need to know whether we need to quarantine or not.


I was hoping to hear from a Toytowner in Berlin who has undergone the process of testing, who could help us with the following questions:


How quickly can one arrange a test in Berlin?
How long do you have to wait to get results?
Does the same test check for antibodies (indicating a previous infection) or do you have to take a different test for that (a blood test for instance)?


I’m not so concerned about the actual experience of being tested - which I’ve heard is pretty uncomfortable - but more about arranging the process.

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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I don't know about Berlin but I had the antibody test a couple of months ago. It was a blood draw. I walked into my Hausarzt and requested it and they drew the blood right there. I think the results took about 3 days.

 

Surely the school will be more forthcoming with this information tomorrow.

 

Best of luck!

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An antibody test is a waste of time for the OP they all need to get tested for the virus ASAP (probably twice, 5 days apart), no blood test just a swab of the nose and throat. It should be possible to arrange a drive/walk in or hospital test using the tel. no. 116 117 or the local Gesundheitamt.

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I took a test last Tuesday in Munich. I made an online appointment one week ahead. I got the result within 24 hours. She went all the way down in my throat, where I almost choked. A DNA-test is more human for sure. The result was negative. Yippie!

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Thanks for the replies so far. The links are really useful and yes, it's most important that we get the tests asap but I also want to know about the antibodies. My daughter and I both got pretty ill with flu symptoms around March, when testing wasn't all that easily available, and I've always wondered exactly what that was.

 

I had a pet theory back then about the role that kids (and schools) played in distributing the virus - in a largely symptomless and random way.

 

We live in Wedding and so I'll contact the Gesundheitsamt in either Mitte or Pankow tomorrow. Not looking forward to having my nose invaded, but glad to hear the results might be back within 24 hours.

 

My Dad suggested the test should be as simple as a piece of litmus paper stuck on the front door that you lick before going out. Green means it's good to go, red means go back to bed!

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2 minutes ago, bauman said:

We live in Wedding and so I'll contact the Gesundheitsamt in either Mitte or Pankow tomorrow.

 

You have to contact the one in Mitte, Pankow can't help you. Do you have a car? There is a drive thru test centre at Rathaus Weddung.

 

You can try the hotline today:

 

Gesundheitsamt Mitte

E-Mail:corona@ba-mitte.berlin.de
Hotline: 030 / 9018-41000
Sprechzeiten:
Montag – Sonntag: 08:00-15:00 Uhr
Link zur Webseite

 

 

 

 

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Thanks engelchen. i just read about the drive-thru in Müllerstr. Unfortunately I don't have a car (but could take a taxi I guess).

 

The Mitte hotline goes to a recorded message (even though it advertises a Sunday Sprechzeit until 3pm). The Berlin general hotline referred me back to the Mitte Gesundheitsamt, but added the useful information that we should download and fill out a contact tracing document and email it to them in advance.

 

I kinda guessed this wasn't going to be so easy but then uncertainty and speculation has been characteristic of the whole pandemic so far.

 

Without wanting to stray off-topic I must say the the whole social dimension of this is pretty disconcerting too. The idea of providing a list of people we've been in contact with before knowing whether we're positive or not, is causing us some anxiety.

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4 minutes ago, bauman said:

i just read about the drive-thru in Müllerstr. Unfortunately I don't have a car (but could take a taxi I guess).

 

They probably also have a solution for walk in traffic. You can ask when you make the appointment. 

 

4 minutes ago, bauman said:

The Mitte hotline goes to a recorded message (even though it advertises a Sunday Sprechzeit until 3pm). The Berlin general hotline referred me back to the Mitte Gesundheitsamt,

 

Try sending them a short email asking where you can get tested (there are probably other options) and give them the name of your kid's school. You might get lucky with someone working remotely today. 

 

4 minutes ago, bauman said:

Without wanting to stray off-topic I must say the the whole social dimension of this is pretty disconcerting too. The idea of providing a list of people we've been in contact with before knowing whether we're positive or not, is causing us some anxiety.

 

From an administrative perspective it is easier for them, however, I understand your anxiety. I'm not sure whether you can delay providing the contact info, but you can try to get tested ASAP.

 

Have you tried calling other parents for more info? I find it really odd that nothing is happening over the weekend.

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38 minutes ago, engelchen said:

Have you tried calling other parents for more info? I find it really odd that nothing is happening over the weekend.

 

It's all happening at a time when students move up a grade and the cohorts split into different groups. The very few parents we know (we being the only native English-speakers in the school) have their kids in other classes now. There's a bit of chatter within the old WhatsApp group but it's mostly nervous speculation.

 

I'm really hoping our school has thought out the hypotheticals. There are others in the same boat from what I've heard...

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On 16/08/2020, 14:37:14, bauman said:

I'm really hoping our school has thought out the hypotheticals. There are others in the same boat from what I've heard...

 

Unfortunately in Berlin many administrative processes are not thought through in advance. <_<

 

Were you able to get all the necessary info from the school on Monday?

 

 

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On 21/08/2020, 08:11:22, engelchen said:

Were you able to get all the necessary info from the school on Monday?

 

 

Yes, it worked out pretty well actually. The school arranged for the class to be tested on the Wednesday and then we had to wait for Friday for results (which were negative, thankfully).

 

There were aspects of the testing procedure I had misgivings about. Kids tend to cough and splutter when a swab stick is jabbed into their mouth and so her 20 classmates coughed and spluttered one after another in a tiny demountable cabinet. The last kid in line would have gotten a good dose of whatever the others were carrying. Luckily none of the others were carrying anything and so we were given the all-clear. Have to remain quarantined until Wednesday however.

 

The Berlin hotline was pretty responsive and speak good English however they will defer to the local Geshundheitsamt for scheduling and procedure. I had a lot of trouble contacting the Geshundheitsamt by phone, although I did get an email response later. Most of the useful information came by way of our daughter's classroom teacher, who was, of course exposed and due to be tested herself. She contacted us by phone.

 

She also explained that the child with direct exposure to the infected child is classified as "person 1" (this makes the infected child "person 0"?) The parent, or whoever is once-removed from "person 1" is "person 2" and so-on along the tree of contact. "person 1" has to undergo quarantine, but not "people 2", which in this case are the parents. Of course, if the child tests positive, then the parents become "people 1" etc.

 

We were really torn about how far down the tree to contact people to tell them there was a risk of infection. There's no easy way to demarcate this. Some friends who were "persons 3 or 4" by the calculation above, were going to postpone attending family events until we could give them our test results. We move in a relatively small social circle but I can imagine how crazy and complicated this could potentially get.

 

Anyway, thanks again to those who gave advice and reassurance in this thread. And best of luck to anyone else in the same situation.

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Great that things worked nicely and it was negative.   Except the spitting thing, I would be concerned as well.  Probably taking the test in the open space would be much better.

 

18 minutes ago, bauman said:

She also explained that the child with direct exposure to the infected child is classified as "person 1" (this makes the infected child "person 0"?) The parent, or whoever is once-removed from "person 1" is "person 2" and so-on along the tree of contact. "person 1" has to undergo quarantine, but not "people 2", which in this case are the parents. Of course, if the child tests positive, then the parents become "people 1" etc.

 

Yes, the infected person is patient-0 and it goes from there.   We are back to work in our office and the policy is that suspected patient-2 (and below) are sent home.  Still didn't happen yet.

 

18 minutes ago, bauman said:

We were really torn about how far down the tree to contact people to tell them there was a risk of infection. There's no easy way to demarcate this. Some friends who were "persons 3 or 4" by the calculation above, were going to postpone attending family events until we could give them our test results. We move in a relatively small social circle but I can imagine how crazy and complicated this could potentially get.

 

 

This is why the Corona-apps would be extremely useful, but unfortunately those things do not work in Germany because of their paranoia about privacy.   A Corona-app might update your status, and the best, privately, so your friends would get warned but without knowing it came from you.

 

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Trying to find info for tests for travel to another EU state:

OH has do do a car journey to Serbia for business purposes, which involves transit through Croatia. Serbia requires a corona test cert as Croatia is a risk area. There's lots of info for tests on return to DE, or if you have symptoms etc. but for an outward journey not so clear.  (I think the local health officials are more concerned about testing returnees. He's phoned the local Gesundheitsamt who have batted him around to different numbers. ) Can he do it through the Hausartz, or from a private clinic? He would need to get the result within 48 hours to comply with the regulations.

Any links to testing from Berlin southwards down to Cottbus would be helpful. 

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"get the result within 48 hours " I always hear that getting something in Berlin within 48hrs is impossible.

Cynism off...

I would ask at Berlin Tegel and Schönefeld.

At the Frankfurt Airport you can get tested and get the result within 12hrs.

Since there are a lot of countries which demand a negativ Covid test before you enter a plane, you should be able to get a test there.

 

 

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Thank you, snowingagain, I missed that! Relief for him as he's basically just driving through.

He may well still try to get a test if poss as regulations are still so volatile. 

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49 minutes ago, Feierabend said:

He may well still try to get a test if poss as regulations are still so volatile. 

 

If you google privat covid 19 test or similar you get lots of hits of places that will test anyone.  PCR test costs 90 to 134 Euro this way.  Some seem to cater particularly for travellers needing a cert where they are going, so presumably know about the 48 hour thing.  Example in Cottbus:

 

https://www.ctk.de/klinikum/aktuelles-veranstaltungen/corona.html

 

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