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Follow this guidance if you have been contacted by the NHS Wales Test, Trace, Protect Service.

Part of:
First published:
5 June 2020
Last updated:


The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • a high temperature: this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough: this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste: this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

Most people with coronavirus have at least one of these symptoms.

Medical advice

Coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms are usually mild, but some people can become very unwell.

It is important that you do not try to cope for too long on your own before seeking medical assistance. You should contact the 111 online coronavirus service or your GP if:

  • your symptoms don’t improve after 7 days
  • you experience breathlessness or vomiting at any time
  • fatigue stops you doing their normal daily activities
  • a baby or a child under 5 has a temperature at any time

If you do not have internet access, call 111. In a medical emergency, dial 999 and inform the call handler or operator that you or your relative have COVID-19 symptoms.

Self-isolation: individuals with symptoms (including household members)

If you develop one of these symptoms, you should follow the self-isolation guidance. Even if your symptoms are mild, you must not to leave your home. Anyone with symptoms must self-isolate for 10 days from when their symptoms started. Anyone in your household who does not have symptoms must self-isolate for 10 days from when the first person in your home started having symptoms.

To protect others, do not go to places like a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital if you have any of these symptoms. Stay at home (self-isolate) and apply for a test as soon as you start developing symptoms.

Self-isolation: support available if you are identified as a contact

If you have been identified as a confirmed contact of someone who has tested positive for coronavirus, you will be contacted by the NHS Wales Test, Trace, Protect service. The contact tracer will advise you to self-isolate for 10 days from your last contact with the person who has tested positive.

Most people will be able to manage self-isolation without additional support or with help from friends and family. However, some people may need help with shopping, access to emergency food, collecting medicine and other forms of support and advice. The NHS Wales Test, Trace, Protect service is there to support you through the self-isolation process, particularly if you are vulnerable or if you have any concerns. The contact tracer will ask you if you need support during self-isolation and will direct you to your local authority who will coordinate the support you need, building on the services they have already been providing to shielded and non-shielded vulnerable people during lockdown.

Self-isolation can be particularly challenging if you are:

  • looking after children
  • caring for vulnerable people who cannot stay with friends or family
  • suffering from anxiety or mental health problems
  • experiencing financial problems
  • homeless or at risk of becoming homeless
  • concerned about the impact it will have on your job or your business
  • suffering from an underlying health condition or disability
  • limited by learning difficulties

The aim of contact tracing is to protect your health and support the ongoing work to control the spread of coronavirus. It is not about enforcement or surveillance. So whatever challenges you may be facing, if you are identified as a confirmed contact you will be provided with the support you need through your local authority and local support and volunteer networks to ensure the process is made as easy as possible for you.

Find help if you’re struggling because of coronavirus.

Support for workers or the self-employed

There is a wide range of support for workers and the self-employed through the need to self-isolate because you (or a member of your household) is displaying symptoms or has tested positive, or if you have been asked to self-isolate as part of the contact tracing process.