There are various tests available for coronavirus, and the one that will be recommended for you depends on whether you have symptoms of the infection or not. Not everyone can take every type of test for COVID-19. Read this article to find out the COVID-19 test you are eligible for.
Types of COVID-19 test
There are two primary types of test for COVID-19. The first is the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) and the other, lateral flow antigen test. These two tests are safe and efficient for the testing of COVID-19.
The most common test is the PCR test. Most people that have tested up to date for COVID-19 had this test. The sample for this test has to be processed in a lab, which can take several days. This test searches for the genetic code of the coronavirus in the swab sample gotten from either your nose or throat.
The lateral flow antigen test is newer and less used. However, it is most preferred for mass testing people that do not have symptoms of the infection. It is done on-site, and the results are usually available within 24 hours, though it can be quicker.
So, in general, the PCR test is for people with the symptoms of COVID-19, and the lateral flow antigen test is for people that do not have the signs of the virus.
Which COVID-19 test do I need?
Besides whether you have the symptoms or not, there are other factors that decide the COVID-19 you are eligible for. There is a decision matrix that will help determine the most appropriate test for you and where to get it.
It is essential for you to get the right test so that you can satisfy your travel requirement and be sure that you are not infecting people around you.
Decision Matrix for COVID-19
|With symptoms and staying in the UK||With symptoms, but planning to travel out of the UK||Without symptoms and staying in the UK||Without symptoms and planning to travel outside of the UK|
|Free PCR test on the NHS (if eligible)||X||X|
|Private PCR test (which you will pay for)||X|
|Lateral flow test (for people without symptoms||X|
Free PCR test on the NHS
This test is provided on the NHS, and it is accessible for people that are sick. However, there are some other criteria you need to meet to be eligible for this test.This PCR test is accessible on the campus in the East Centre Car Park test centre. It is a walk-in clinic. That means that you do not need to book an appointment before going there.
This PCR test will only be done for people that have had symptoms for five days or more. This is because the test is believed to be more effective at this time.
It may take up to 48 hours to get your result for the PCR test.If you are eligible, you can simply book a local test through GOV.UK if you are eligible for this test.
The free test is not just for people that are sick; it is also for people that want to travel abroad but have the symptoms of the infection. If you have the symptoms, you will only be able to travel after presenting a negative result or completing your self-isolation duration.
Private PCR test
If you have no symptoms but want to travel abroad, you will take this test. This test is available with a private provider, and you need to pay for it. You can obtain this test at PCR Test London. You can also search for private PCR tests in your location to find other available options.
No symptom test
If you want to travel within the UK for a winter break and are not sick, you will take the lateral flow (no symptom) test two times, three days apart. These tests are free on-campus through the Pathfoot Building’s no symptom test centre.
This is not a walk-in clinic, so you will need to book in advance and receive a date for your visit.Note that this test is only for people that are not sick. If you are sick, you need to get a PCR test.
Get a private PCR test with us
If you are searching for a “COVID-19 PCR test near me”, you should visit us at PCR Test London. We are a private coronavirus test clinic that offers all types of COVID-19 tests in London with diligence and effectiveness at a fair price. You can book an appointment with us to reserve your date for testing. Feel free to contact us for more information.