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Jan Finster

Coronavirus - those in China, and general discussion

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Jim
1 hour ago, carlo said:

So what this means is that they are letting residents of China with foreign passports back in?

It might be in cases like mine where I have a residence permit valid for two years at each renewal that allows me to leave China and come back without needing any other visa. So if you had travelled on a similar permit and then not been allowed back, now you can come. Only my speculation by the way, not really followed the precise current rules.

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carlo
29 minutes ago, Jim said:

It might be in cases like mine where I have a residence permit valid for two years at each renewal that allows me to leave China and come back without needing any other visa.

Got it, thanks, but does your permit allow you stay for more than 180 days each year without ever having to exit (which would be the definition of "resident" in most places)?

 

Maybe the source of my confusion is that now I hold a Q2 visa, which is specifically meant for <180-day stays, while if I had applied for a Q1, I'd have exchanged my 签证 for a 居留许可 at some point. I think.

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Jim
12 minutes ago, carlo said:

Got it, thanks, but does your permit allow you stay for more than 180 days each year without ever having to exit (which would be the definition of "resident" in most places)?

Yes, I can stay as long as I like for the duration of the whole permit and even only have to register with the local PSB on renewal. I went once to register again after a trip overseas and was told there was no need.

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Lu

(Not about China, just a rant.)

 

I woke up yesterday with a sore throat. Today it's still sore, so I thought I'd get tested. Managed to contact the central testing organisation (this took some effort). No appointments available in my city for the next five days; they can't schedule further ahead than that, so I was advised to call back tomorrow. There was a spot in Amsterdam, on Friday. Amsterdam is about half an hour's driving away. I don't own a car and am not a very good driver, so it's not a great idea to borrow a car to drive an unfamiliar route on my own. I should not take public transportation, because I might infect someone on the train. So Amsterdam won't work. I'll call back tomorrow if my sore throat doesn't improve and hope something opened up within cycling distance. I have plans this weekend and had hoped to make sure I don't have covid before that, but that's clearly out.

 

It could just be a sore throat, which will be helped with lots of tea with honey. But I'm on my last teaspoon of honey. I think I'll go to the supermarket anyway (with mask).

 

My country has had months to get its act together and it hasn't. It's still perpetually chasing after facts. Our government isn't actively evil, it just has that right-wing 'oh it never affected me, surely it can't be that bad' attitude.

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xinoxanu

Hope it's nothing, Lu.

 

Don't forget to drink copious amounts of plain, scalding hot water!

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xinoxanu

So just got this in from one of my EU embassies in China:

 

Quote

If entering China via the city of Xi'an, in the cases of people who have previously been diagnosed with coronavirus, who are cured and have a positive result in the analysis of IgG antibodies and have a negative result in the PCR test, the protocol dictates they have to undergo a quarantine observation in a medical centre for 14 days + another quarantine of 14 days in a hotel designated by the authorities.

 

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Lu
5 hours ago, Flickserve said:

how are you?

Still drinking lots of tea with honey, throat still sore (should have drunk 开水 instead!) But I'm otherwise fine, I wouldn't even register it as sickness if it wasn't for the times. I'm getting tested today, six days after symptoms started and five days after I first called. I should get the results within 48 hours but have already been warned it often takes longer. Contact tracing I think has been largely just given up, because too many people are sick and not enough contact tracers have been hired and trained, so if I do have covid (let's hope not), I guess I'll start calling people myself. Probably on Thursday at the earliest, nine days after symtoms started/eight days after I called for a test, so if it's covid at least two weeks after I got infected. It's such a mess here.

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roddy

Not sure how it is where you are, but in the UK a sore throat doesn't even rate a mention on the list of symptoms they're concerned about. Looks like it's a possible, but not very common, symptom. 

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Lu
14 minutes ago, roddy said:

Looks like it's a possible, but not very common, symptom.

I know. And I don't think it's covid. I'm not worried for myself (since I'm pretty sure it's not covid, despite not being a doctor), but what is one supposed to do? In an ideal country, I would have gotten a test on Wednesday afternoon and a text with 'you're fine' on Thursday, instead of two days of phonecalls and five days and counting of being unsure. And I am someone who lives alone, was working from home anyway and happened to not have any social plans last week. It's much more disruptive for people in other situations, which is most people. This is just no way to manage a pandemic. The Dutch government is just so used to everything running well that it has forgotten that it takes work to set up a system that runs well. With a new problem, you can't just coast.

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roddy

Don't know - obviously it depends on what the local advice is and your own judgement call. But here in the UK I wouldn't be able to get tested without the three 'main' symptoms (fever, cough, taste/smell) and there's no advice to isolate for the non-main symptoms, so it'd probably be a case of carrying on as usual - which at the moment in Edinburgh is a fairly strict lockdown situation anyway. 

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Lu

I have to say that I lied a little, told them I had a sore throat with sometimes a cough (true) and also that my nose was bothering me (strictly speaking true, but I am literally always sniffy, so that is not really a symptom of sickness in my case). So that was my personal judgement call.

 

Anyway I just got back from testing. Once inside the building it was very efficient, quick, safe, friendly and easy, but that was after an almost 45-minute wait in the 院子 outside, in the occasional rain, in a line that did not move for the last 15-20 minutes. When I complained to an employee, they said that was because of an IT problem, but someone else told me it had been the coffee break. I don't know which is true. The timing certainly matched a coffee break. They had 60 people, many of them sick (because that's why they were there) standing outside in the rain.

 

 

Edited to add: On the news last night I read that there had indeed been a nation-wide computer problem earlier in the morning. So what probably happened at my location is that they ran up a delay because of the computer problem and then still took their coffee break at the usual time of 10:30, when they still had some 15 minutes of people standing in line who should have been in & out already had it not been for the delay. Still not great judgment, but well.

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roddy

"Are you ill?"

"I am now."

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mungouk

I've yet to experience my first COVID PCR test (swab test) but it should be next week, so I've been searching for tips on how to make it less unpleasant... I've heard that the tests you get on arrival at Chinese airports can be fairly brutal... "agricultural" is the word one colleague used. 🤔

This is all I found so far... use nasal decongestant before the test, and maybe an antihistamine if you think you might react badly to the test afterwards.

 

Anyone else have any tips?

 

 

https://www.asthmacenter.com/coronavirus-test-nose-pain-pcr/

 

Quote

One technique that may make the process easier is to simply apply an over the counter nasal decongestant (0.05% oxymetazoline, brand name Afrin) inside the nose 30 to 60 minutes prior to the procedure. One drop to each nostril applied while lying down is usually enough to decongest the nose so that when the swab is passed, the nasal airway is maximally opened. This can prevent the swab pushing up against the walls of the nasal passageway causing pain and sometimes bleeding. By the time the swab is collected and the coronavirus test is performed, there is very little residual oxymetazoline left in the airway to affect the viability of the virus or have an effect on the assay. In addition, sneezing, coughing and tearing may be prevented or lessened with taking an antihistamine 30-60 minutes before the

test. 

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Shelley

I have had 3 test so far (all negative).

 

Absolutely fine, nothing at to worry about.

 

A slight gagging sensation for the one in the mouth once, each test was done by a different person so a slight difference in technique, and a tickly feeling in the nose. All disappeared within minutes of have the test.

 

i would do nothing to prepare except have a tissue in case you sneeze.

 

I have no idea why they would suggest an antihistamine, there is no allergic reaction unless you are sensitive to cotton wool. 

 

Hope it goes well.

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Flickserve
57 minutes ago, mungouk said:

Anyone else have any tips?

 

I would think additional local anaesthetic spray into the nose would be quite useful but I don't know if it would be available to purchase.

 

Cophenylcaine or something similar sprayed up the nostril about ten minutes beforehand would do the trick.

 

 

Edit: don't think antihistamine will have any benefit whatsoever.

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Shelley
21 minutes ago, Flickserve said:

I would think additional local anaesthetic spray into the nose

 

It doesn't warrant this, it didn't hurt, maybe a bit tickly and uncomfortable but no pain.

 

It seems like some people are making a big thing of this, its not. Its over in 30 seconds, no pain.

 

Just go do it, it easy.:D

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mungouk

From what I've been told, I will be expected to pay £250 and then probe my own cavities here in Manchester... Gag reflex is what I'm most worried about.

 

Also I've had sinus problems for many years, so I'm not looking forward to swabs poking around in there.

 

9 minutes ago, Shelley said:

Its over in 30 seconds, no pain.

 

Well it does seem that people's experiences vary quite a bit!

 

 

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Flickserve
6 hours ago, Shelley said:

 

It seems like some people are making a big thing of this

 

I agree the issue did surprise me a little. However, some people are naturally squeamish and then get anxious about being poked.

 

6 hours ago, mungouk said:

Gag reflex is what I'm most worried about.

 

Ah, should be able to get a good sample then when it happens.

 

Do you have to be tested before you fly? If so, what's the time frame before flying?

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Lu

I was a bit worried too but it was fine. The person taking the swab warned me that I might have a gag reflex when they did the throat swab and I did, but pretty much the instant that I gagged it was already over. I was worried about my nose, which has some scarring on the inside and is rather narrow, but that was totally fine as well. The person taking the swab told me to relax and put my head back; I slumped way back in my chair and put my head back and it was completely painless. A bit ticklish.

 

I can see how nasal spray/nasal drops can help if your nose is congested, it opens up the passage. I don't see the benefit of antihistamine in this case, but I can't see any possible harm to it either.

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