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Detailed guide: Get a test for coronavirus (COVID-19) if you do not have symptoms

Department Of Health

February 27
10:10 2021

Who can get a test

You may be able to get a test in England to check if you have coronavirus without having symptoms.

Devolved administrations are also working on their plans for testing if you do not have symptoms in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. See your nations website for more details of all forms of coronavirus testing in your area.

Coronavirus symptoms are:

  • a high temperature
  • a new, continuous cough
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste

If you have symptoms, it is important that you get a test for people with symptoms online or by calling 119.

How to get a test if you do not have symptoms

Testing sites for people without symptoms are being rolled out across the country. These are available in places such as schools, universities, some workplaces and local councils.

During national lockdown, many local councils are prioritising people who cannot work from home.

Check if you can get a test from your local council, or contact your employer or place of study to find out more.

If youre in England, you may be offered twice-weekly rapid lateral flow tests if someone in your household, childcare bubble or support bubble goes to a primary or secondary school, or works at one.

Find out more about twice-weekly testing.

There is information about community testing for local councils.

NHS and social care workers

NHS Test and Trace is making regular coronavirus testing available to people without symptoms who work in the NHS and social care.

Why you should get a test

Around 1 in 3 people with coronavirus do not have any symptoms. This means they could be spreading the virus without knowing it.

The tests for people without symptoms deliver results in 30 minutes. So if you test positive, you can act quickly to self-isolate and prevent passing the virus on to others.

Published 22 January 2021
Last updated 27 February 2021 +show all updates
  1. Updated to add information on lateral flow tests for secondary school children and for people who work in a school.

  2. Added a link to find out if your area offers rapid asymptomatic LFD testing.

  3. First published.

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