The Estonian Society of Family Doctors (Eesti Perearstide Selts) went to investigate why are there so few virus samples taken in the eastern Estonian town of Narva. There are more than 50,000 people living in Narva, but only one infected person been discovered so far.
In mobile sample tents established ten days ago, a little over a hundred corona samples have been taken from Narva citizens, although the capability is many times higher, ETV current affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported.
On two days, the tent was even closed, due to the lack of people wanting to be tested. The municipality has blamed family doctors, who they say haven´t directed people to take the test. Family doctors confirm that there few patients with the required symptoms, and there´s no reason to test a healthy patient.
The family doctors society board head, Karmen Joller, explained the situation by the fact that when the coronavirus first arrived in Estonia (in late February-ed.), people already started to distance themselves from each other, and washing their hands more. This had also had an effect on the incidence of common flu strains.
"Actually, the good old flu has almost retreated. There are a few other diseases as well, I also see it in my practice. Maybe this is one of the reasons. As far as I can understand, the family doctors know very well which kind of patients should be directed [to testing]," Joller said.
Language should not be an issue in the largely Russian-speaking town, either, Joller said.
"We sent the instructions both in Estonian and Russian, and I think that is not related to language problems, it is rather related to the fact that people are healthier at the moment," Joller said.
Joller made her comments on "Aktuaalne kaamera" on Tuesday evening, before a single COVID-19 coronavirus case had been reported. However, the first infected person was diagnosed on Tuesday, March 31.
"This was expected, because the number of analyses has increased and it would be naive to believe that Narva will stay untouched by it," the mayor of Narva Aleksei Jevgrafov said after the first diagnosis.
Editor: Roberta Vaino