Turkish government fails to notify citizen of coronavirus test result
A 35-year-old Turkish citizen has been under quarantine since March 13 because he has not been notified of the results of his coronavirus test, which was administered upon his return to Turkey from Zurich. Serkan Özkan had a fever and cough upon his arrival in Istanbul but was not placed under quarantine. Uncertain of his test results he self-isolated, wondering if he is among the 29 newly diagnosed persons that Turkish Health Minister said were detected March 16.
Serkan Alan / DUVAR
A 35-year-old Turkish citizen has been under quarantine since his return from Zurich March 13, as he does not know the results of his coronavirus test or whether he is among the 29 new cases the Turkish Health Minister said were detected late March 16.
Serkan Özkan was on a work trip in Switzerland and flew into Istanbul’s Sabiha Gökçen Airport, where he was tested for the coronavirus.
“Actually, I had a fever but I wasn’t placed under quarantine. I was coughing too, so I placed myself under quarantine,” Özkan said.
Isolated in a room in his parents’ home, Özkan has had a fever and a cough, but no word from health officials about his test results.
“Nobody’s called me in the past four days. I’d shared my contact information with them too. I tried calling the 184 coronavirus help line but they said couldn’t give me any information,” Özkan said.
He even called the Istanbul and Ankara provincial health directorates, but wasn’t able to talk to anyone.
While frustrated about being left in the dark, Özkan is acting with a sense of responsibility, he said.
“I’m not experiencing any symptoms that require a trip to the hospital. Besides, I don’t want to give anybody coronavirus if I have it,” Özkan said.
“If they let me know my results sooner than later, I’ll take myself to the hospital. Or they’ll take me. If I tested negative, at least I’ll have some peace of mind under quarantine.”
Özkan went directly to his parents’ home in the Marmara province of Kocaeli, where his sister, in her 50s, and her children are staying as well.
Aware of the many coronavirus patients who have infected their loved ones, Özkan said he keeps a distance from his family.
“They’ll just leave some water at my door and run away.”