How do I know if I have COVID-19 and how do I get tested if I think I have COVID-19
Most people with Covid-19 have at least one of the three main symptoms which are:
- High temperature: this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- A new, continuous cough: this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- Loss or change to your sense of smell or taste: this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
Anyone displaying any of these three symptoms of COVID-19 should stay at home and self-isolate while making arrangements to be tested. If the test result is negative the person can return to their regular routine when they are well enough to do so.
Individuals receiving a positive test result
If you receive a positive test result, you must self isolate for 10 days and follow the stay at home guidance. If you receive a positive lateral flow test (LFT) result, you should isolate and arrange a follow-up PCR test.
Close contacts of positive cases of COVID-19 who are not required to self- isolate
From 7 August you will not be asked to self-isolate if you are identified as a close contact of a positive case of COVID-19, provided that you have been fully vaccinated or are under 18. You are considered to be fully vaccinated if you received the full course of an approved vaccine within the UK and it has been at least two weeks (14 days) since you completed a full course.
If you have participated in a COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial (if carried out in accordance with the requirements of the Medicines for Human Use (Clinical Trials) Regulations 2004(2)), you do not need to self-isolate if contacted by TTP.
Contact tracers will call you to inform you that you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. You will be offered PCR tests on day 2 from your last contact with the person who tested positive (or as soon as possible once identified as a contact) and again on day 8. It is important that you take these tests even if you feel well, you may have COVID-19 even if you do not have symptoms.
Anyone who has coronavirus symptoms should not go out, even if they are wearing a face covering.