One of our young volunteers was invited to take part in a COVID-19 testing research study. She shares her experience with us.

The invitation came to participate in a COVID-19 testing research study. The paperwork looked very official. I had to decide if I wanted to do it and discussed it with my parents to make the decision. It was yes.

The parcel arrived on the 14th  May and we had to wait for the next day to use it because there were specific instructions on when someone would pick it up and how to store it after use.

EnvelopeCovid-19 Testing instructions

I had to wake up early because there was a pickup time of around 9-9:30am. When I got downstairs, we got out all the equipment and read the instructions. I had to blow my nose and cough into a tissue before use to get rid of any excess saliva and mucus and then we were ready to take the samples.

My mum decided to do it for me instead of me doing it because she could probably see it easier. We had to find my tonsils and take a sample with this stick with a small amount of cotton wool on the end. She needed to do it for 10 seconds, but it was very difficult as I kept gagging and we had to do in about 2-3 second intervals because it was very hard to do it all in one. We then moved onto the nose which was also very difficult as it kind of hurt to do and it made me sneeze. We also had to take this one in like 4 second intervals because it was hard to keep it in for long periods of time.

Testing equipment and info

We then had to snap the stick and put it into a tub with a screw lid, package it all up and keep it in the fridge until pickup time.

Overall it was quite a painful experience and difficult for both me and my mum. The pain in my nose lasted for a while after strangely, but it went away after half an hour. It hurt quite a bit and was a very frustrating experience for both me and my mum because my body just wouldn’t let us get it over with. There were a few tears shed because it just hurt, but it didn’t take too long to complete.

I am nervous to receive the results because I’m scared to find out if I have had, have or haven’t had COVID, but I feel like the test was worth it because I’m helping the nurses and doctors, and really the country, in a way to faster help them find a cure or find a better way to detect the disease.

Covid-19 test result

Update, the results have arrived, and I am free from the virus. I am happy because I am clear and I was able to contribute to this, even in some small way.

Would I do it again?

If it was the same test, probably not, it was way too uncomfortable. I have been asked to give online feedback about my experience and I will let them know that the discomfort might put people off.