"The consequence of spending the night with the samples of fish, shrimp, pigs, cows and sheep to be tested is that you get hungry."
The interesting words came from Hou Ying, a 22-year-old nucleic acid tester in Nanchong city, southwest China's Sichuan province. She shared her feelings that have now gone viral online in her WeChat Moments when she was conducting nucleic acid tests for frozen foods.
"Your list of nucleic acid tests is like a hotpot restaurant menu," commented Hou's friends.
The nationwide authorities have heightened efforts to test cold-chain products for novel coronavirus(COVID-19) - especially those from high-risk countries - since the recent outbreak in Beijing tied to a wholesale food market raised concerns about the safety of fresh and frozen food.
Hou joined the lab's nucleic acid testing program in late May. Despite the heavy workload, the young woman is always capable of finding fun from it.
In contrast to the gaiety of Hou's words, she often works from one o'clock in the afternoon, when the frontline samplers bring items back to the lab, to late at night and even early in the morning. She has worked more than 10 hours a day for the last 40 days.
Given that the lab is in the suburbs, when Hou returns to her dormitory, there is no food available, and she appeases her hunger only with bread and water.
Hou Ying [West China City Daily]
Hou graduated from Chengdu Medical College and majored in medical examination technology. She has been working in CellMed Diagnosis in Nanchong for two years, responsible for blood routine examination and immunological detection.
In late May, the company where she works was designated as a COVID-19 nucleic acid testing institution.
"The COVID-19 nucleic acid testing needs a high professional requirement, so that I didn't think I would be involved in the project at first," Hou explained, adding that she felt that a glorious social mission had fallen on her shoulders for the first time when her leader transferred her to the project team, which also brought her confidence and strength.
"Behind each sample of nucleic acid is an individual's hopeful expectation of a good health result. We must give results as quickly as possible while ensuring quality above all," she noted.