How quickly can I get a Covid test result?

There are about 300,000 coronavirus tests conducted every day in Britain. UK citizens now have access to pop-up tests all over the country.

The NHS offers free tests if you are experiencing symptoms, have been asked by your local council, to confirm a result, or if someone you live with has symptoms.

Some people may worry about how long they will have to wait for the results of a coronavirus test. Since the rules state that those needing to take a test must isolate themselves until a negative result is obtained, many are anxious about how long it will take.

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Have you taken the Covid-19 test? Below, we cover all you need to know obout how long you have to wait in the UK to receive your results.

Getting Your Test Result 

The NHS usually sends you a text or an email when your test results are ready.

Those who have installed the NHS Covid-19 track and trace app may also view their test results within the application. 

According to the type of test you have had, it may take a certain amount of time for the results to come back.

How Long You Can Expect to Wait for Results

Rapid swab tests, commonly known as lateral flow tests, are usually ready within two hours if you are using the NHS for the test.

If a rapid swab test result is not returned within 12 hours, it is recommended that you get a second test.

When you have a PCR test – which is done at a laboratory – the process takes a little longer. 

In most cases, patients receive their results the next day, but it can sometimes take up to 3 days.

If you choose a private test, the timetable is determined by the company. Although some companies offer same-day PCR tests, most have turnaround times of 24 to 48 hours.

For those that have symptoms, no matter what type of test you take, you should remain self-isolated until you receive your result. 

Is There a Way to Speed Up Test Results? 

If you choose to carry out a rapid swab test at home, you can result in as little as 30 minutes. However, it is important to note that these types of tests are not always accurate. 

This is because they require the person taking the test to ensure that their space is not contaminated and that it is thoroughly clean. As such, our homes are not the ideal place in which to take a coronavirus test. 

Anybody that needs a coronavirus test result quickly should turn to a walk-in centre to get an accurate and speedy test result. 

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Do I Need to Self Isolate until My Test Results Are Back?

Yes, you should self isolate until you receive your test results. You will also need to ensure that when you visit the testing centre you are careful and practice social distancing rules. 

You could be unknowingly carrying the virus, even if you have no symptoms. The workers at the walk-in test centre will advise you of the procedure you need to follow to take the test and how to avoid possible contamination with others.

Where Can I Get a Private Test?

Medicspot offers customers PCR and antigen travel COVID-19 tests. You are guaranteed same-day antigen and next-day PCR results for total peace of mind. Whether you are planning to travel abroad or would prefer to pay for a private test, there are many options available to you. 

Always choose a reputable and reliable testing company if you are choosing to pay for a coronavirus test!


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