Coronavirus swab test (click to expand)
If you have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), you can ask for a test to check if you have the virus:
- for yourself, if you have coronavirus symptoms now (a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste)
- for someone you live with, if they have coronavirus symptoms
Anyone aged five or older can have the test. It needs to take place within the first five days of developing symptoms. but it’s best to ask for it in the first 3 days, as it may take a day or two to arrange.
Most people will have the test at a drive-through test centre. If you do not have access to a car, you can request a home test, but there are limited numbers of these.
You should not go to the test centre unless you have booked an appointment in advance.
A local testing centre is in operation at Birstall Park and Ride which means that it will be even easier for people in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland to get tested and get back to carrying out their critical roles. Other mobile testing sites will also be opened locally to help meet demand where it is needed.
If you are an essential worker, your employer may have specific procedures for you to follow to ensure you get a test quickly. If you are an essential worker or an employer of essential workers, you can find out more using the links below.
Coronavirus tests for essential workers (click to expand)
If you are an essential worker, contact your employer and book your appointment as soon as you develop symptoms and begin self-isolating. You can find out if you are an essential worker here
How to book your test
- Contact your employer and let them know you are self-isolating as soon as you develop symptoms. People should aim to be tested within three day of symptoms.
- Some employers will choose to refer their employees for a test using an online portal or they may ask you to do it yourself. If you have been asked to refer yourself, visit www.gov.uk/coronavirus
- After referral, you will receive a text message containing a website link and a verification code. You will then need to use these to book a test for yourself and the people you live with. Your appointment could be at the Birstall Park and Ride or at another local centre. A confirmation of your booking will be sent to you by email.
- Drive to the test centre and show the booking confirmation at the security gate (either a printed copy or on your smartphone).
- Follow the instructions on-site. The test consists of a swab for the mouth and nose.
- The results will be sent to you by text message.
- Let your employer know the result of your test. If the result is negative, you will be able to return to work, as long as:
• you are well enough
• you have not had a high temperature for 48 hours
• anyone you live with also tests negative.If your test result is positive, or someone you live with tests positive, you cannot return to work. You will need to continue to self-isolate.
Information you may also find useful:
Guidance for employers (click to expand)
- Find out if you employ essential workers. You can do this here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested#the-testing-process
- If you do employ essential workers, you can choose whether you would like to support your employees by making a referral for them to have a test, or whether you would prefer them to do this themselves.
Referring your employees
- If you haven’t done so already, register with the online portal. The first step is to email email@example.com for access. Please include your organisation name, sector, region and the name and email address of up to two people who will use the portal.
- Once you have access to the portal, upload the details straight away of any essential workers who are already self-isolating*. You must do this by 3pm.
- Continue to upload details each day (by 3pm) of any new essential workers who begin self-isolating.
If you would like employees to refer themselves for a test
- Contact all employees who are already self-isolating* and ask them to refer themselves for a test at: www.gov.uk/coronavirus
- When a new employee reports they are self-isolating, ask them to refer themselves for a test in the same way.
- Use your internal communication channels such as notice boards, newsletters, emails and meetings to remind your employees about self-isolation and what to do.
* People should aim to be tested within three day of symptoms.