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How to get regular COVID-19 lateral flow tests to stop the spread of coronavirus.

First published:
4 March 2021
Last updated:

Overview

About 1 in 3 people with coronavirus do not have symptoms but can still infect others.

Getting tested regularly is the only way to know if you have the virus. If people test positive and self-isolate, it helps stop the virus spreading.

Rapid lateral flow tests are for people who do not have coronavirus symptoms.

If you have COVID-19 symptoms you need to book a PCR test (on gov.uk).

How to get lateral flow tests

In Wales, you can get lateral flow tests for you and your household if:

  • you are a volunteer
  • you cannot work from home
  • you are an unpaid carer

If you get tests through your employer or education setting you should continue to do so.

Order rapid lateral flow home test kits on GOV.UK. You can order 1 home testing kit (7 tests) at a time. Delivery takes 1 to 2 days.

You can also collect testing kits in person. Find your nearest collection point and opening times (on nhs.uk). You can collect 2 home testing kits (14 tests) at a time.

You should test twice a week, 3 to 4 days apart. Please report rapid lateral flow test results (on GOV.UK) the day you or someone in your household takes the test.  

If your test is positive you should book a PCR test within 24 hours of the positive lateral flow test result.

School, college and nursery testing

If you attend or work at a school, college or nursery you can get rapid tests through your school, college or nursery.

You're advised to do a test twice a week.

Primary school-age children and younger do not need to test.

Employee and university testing

Some employers and universities offer rapid tests. Ask your employer or university if they provide rapid tests.

How the tests work