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While Saudi Arabia has largely aced the pandemic response, the ministry reaffirmed its appeal to the public to register for the vaccination and testing via the Sehhaty app and to follow the procedures and instructions.

If you find that you’ve tested positive for COVID-19 in Saudi Arabia, here is everything you should know.

What are the common COVID-19 symptoms?

The most frequent symptoms of COVID-19 are:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Sore Throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Lose sense of smell and taste
  • Headache
  • Nausea

It has the potential to produce serious problems in those with immunodeficiency, the elderly, and those who have chronic illnesses including cancer, diabetes, or lung disease.

According to studies, at least 40% to 50% of persons who test positive with COVID-19 experience no symptoms. Although most SARS-CoV-2 infections (a variant of Coronavirus) are moderate or even asymptomatic, they can nevertheless spread the virus to others, according to research.

People with the above mentioned symptoms must get tested.

Testing for COVID-19

The most common tests you can get are:

  1. PCR Test: The most often used test for tracking infection in humans is the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). This lab test has a sensitivity rate of almost 100 percent and a specificity rate of nearly 100 percent, which means it can detect persons without disease.
  2. Antigen Test: Only when recognising people who are highly symptomatic does the quick antigen test come in handy. A swab is also used to gather samples from the nose or throat. Despite the fact that the findings are available in 30 minutes, this test is not regarded reliable since it may not read into key proteins that are part of Coronavirus in its early stages.

How to get tested?

Whether or not they have symptoms, nationals and residents of Saudi Arabia can use the Sehaty App to make an appointment for COVID-19 testing. COVID-19 testing is available in a variety of permanent and mobile sites around Saudi Arabia.

  1. Click Sehaty App link on Google Play or Apple Store.
  2. Download Sehaty App.
  3. Type in your information.
  4. Book your appointment.
  5. Go to your appointment at the time and location you booked.
  6. You will receive your COVID-19 test result via the app or text message


What to do if I test positive for COVID-19?


Because there is a significant danger of spreading the virus to others, you must self-isolate (remain in your room). Keep to yourself in a room with a window open for ventilation. Completely avoid making touch with other individuals. If you require immediate medical treatment, such as a trip to the hospital, do not leave your room.

The period of isolation (quarantine) depends on the circumstances of each case:

  • If a confirmed patient does not display any symptoms after obtaining a positive test result, they are deemed recovered and do not need to take a test if they complete the whole isolation time without showing any symptoms.
  • A confirmed case with symptoms should be isolated at home for at least 10 days, counting backwards from when the symptoms first emerged. If the isolation period ends within 3 days of the symptoms disappearing, then they are considered a recovered case and do not need to take a test.
  • The case who has had contact with a confirmed case should isolate at home for 14 days; the days should be computed from the time the symptoms first showed on the confirmed case with whom this case has had contact. Because this is the disease’s incubation phase, during which symptoms are likely to emerge.

What are the procedures followed by infected individuals in home isolation?

To assist prevent the transmission of COVID-19 during home isolation, the infected person must take the following steps:

  • Rest, eat nutritious foods, including plenty of vegetables and fruits, and drink plenty of water.
  • Except in the case of an emergency, stay at home.
  • Any (COVID-19) symptoms, such as fever, cough, or other symptoms, should be monitored and managed as much as possible (e.g., taking antipyretic medicine if your temperature increases) (e.g.Paracetamol).
  • Isolate yourself in a certain room as much as possible at home, away from other people and pets.
  • If feasible, use a separate toilet; but, if you must use a common toilet, make sure it is sanitized and disinfected after each use.
  • When they are among other people at home, they should wear a medical or fabric mask that covers their nose and mouth to prevent the virus from spreading.
  • When coughing or sneezing, they should cover their mouth and nose with a tissue and throw it away, then wash their hands for at least 40 seconds with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
  • At home, never share dishes, silverware, or towels with others.
  • Dishes should be washed thoroughly with soap and water after each use, or disposable utensils should be used whenever possible (cups, plates and spoons).
  • Using disposable gloves, clean and disinfect highly touched surfaces in the room and the toilet.
  • Visitors should be avoided, particularly those who are most prone to problems, such as the elderly and those with chronic illnesses.
  • When they acquire advanced symptoms such as trouble breathing, they should go to the nearest hospital right once.
  • Care directions from your healthcare professional should be followed.

How to monitor the help of infected patient during home isolation?

By closely monitoring their symptoms and minimising their intensity, they should be transported to the emergency room as soon as possible if their condition worsens or any of the following symptoms appear:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Constant pain or pressure in the chest
  • Having trouble waking up or staying awake
  • Skin colour or lips turning to blue

Is it necessary to take a COVID-19 test to confirm recovery?

The absence of symptoms for the past three days and the completion of the isolation time are sufficient to certify recovery. The COVID-19 test is a diagnostic tool only; it has no bearing on recovery.

What are measures to be taken after home isolation recovery?

After you’ve recovered, disinfect any commonly handled objects like door knobs and light switches, and make sure the area is adequately ventilated. Also, thoroughly wash the items you’ve worn with soap and water. After that, you can resume your usual routine while taking the necessary precautions.


What if I have COVID-19 symptoms but tested negative?

It’s important to note that even though you tested negative for-19 doesn’t imply your symptoms aren’t important. If someone is sick, it is strongly suggested that they stay at home until their fever has subsided and they feel better. Speaking with your doctor about testing, treatments, and medicines may be beneficial. It is critical to assist your body recuperate from any sickness by obtaining enough of rest and water.

You can also take Tylenol or Ibuprofen to relieve symptoms, as well as vitamins to strengthen your immune system. Vitamin C and Zinc are both beneficial.


Am I immune after recovering from COVID-19?

After a COVID-19 infection, you are expected to remain immune (protected) for at least 9 months.

During the nine months, you will:

  • are unlikely to become infected with COVID-19 again
  • will not need to be retested unless you develop symptoms of COVID-19
  • will not need to restrict your movements (stay at home) if you are a close contact of someone else who has COVID-19


When to take the vaccine after recovering from COVID-19?

According to medical tests that showed the procedure’s safety, the first dose can be taken 10 days following recuperation. Furthermore, combining the two dosages improves viral protection against severe mutations.

More information about vaccines in Saudi Arabia may be found here.

COVID-19 helpline

The Ministry of Health (MOH) has urged citizens and residents to contact the (937) support centre if they have any questions about the COVID-19, emphasising the significance of respiratory disease prevention in general. ​