Changes to testing for coronavirus in England

Guidance on testing has changed. Find out when you should get tested and how to get a test.
covid test

Free testing for coronavirus (COVID-19) from the NHS has ended for most people in England. Free testing services have closed at:

  • pharmacies
  • test sites
  • community collection points such as libraries
  • schools, nurseries and universities

What you can do instead of taking a COVID-19 test

Most people in England are no longer advised to get tested. Find out:

If you still want to get tested and you're not eligible for a free NHS test, you must pay for a COVID-19 test yourself. You can buy a COVID-19 test from some pharmacies and retailers, in person or online. Do not call 119, as you will not be able to get a test this way. You cannot order tests from NHS 111 or 999.

Who can get a free NHS COVID-19 test

There are a small number of people who will still be able to get free COVID-19 tests from the NHS:

Order a free NHS COVID-19 test if you're eligible

You can get free NHS test kits sent to your home.

Order NHS home test kits on GOV.UK

If you need help with your order

If you cannot use the online service to order and you're eligible for free NHS tests, you can call 119 (free from mobiles and landlines).

Lines are open every day, 7am to 11pm. 119 provides support in 200 languages.

SignVideo is a free online British Sign Language interpreter service for 119.

What is a Covid-test?

There are different tests you can get to check if you have coronavirus (COVID-19). The test you need depends on why you're getting tested.

The 2 main tests are:

  • PCR tests – mainly for people with symptoms, they're sent to a lab to be checked
  • rapid lateral flow tests – these are usually for people who do not have symptoms, they give a quick result using a device similar to a pregnancy test
How to take a coronavirus self-test swab

Sources of information

If you have any  questions or concerns contact us by the details below and we will work to find you an answer.

020 8099 5335

info@healthwatchrichmond.co.uk

Looking for further information about coronavirus?

We have brought together the latest information about coronavirus including how you can get involved and help your community, and how to help your wellbeing during these uncertain times. 

Find out more