Public Health Wales on Testing for Coronavirus announced by Vaughan Gething

Public Health Wales on Testing for Coronavirus announced by Vaughan Gething

Testing Update

  • Following the announcement from the Health Minister, Vaughan Gething, yesterday, any person over the age of five showing symptoms can now request a home testing kit. Please note the test is not suitable for children under five years old.
  • In Wales, we are prioritising the testing of symptomatic critical workers to enable them to return to work safely and quickly.
  • The case definition of coronavirus was also updated yesterdayThe symptoms of coronavirus are: a new continuous cough OR fever (38 degrees or higher) OR loss of smell or taste.
  • Any person over the age of five with these symptoms can request a testYou need to take the test in the first five days of having symptoms. It is best to apply for the test in the first three days as it may take one or two days to arrange.
  • You should self-isolate if you develop the above symptoms. Your household should self-isolate too, as per the current guidelines, until the test result is back.
  • A symptomatic member of the public can use the online booking portal to request a home testing kit (NHS). This portal is for members of the public. Separate arrangements are in place for critical workers (see below).
  • A symptomatic member of the public can also request a home testing kit for up to three other symptomatic members of their household.
  • The online booking portal is experiencing very high demand. If the type of test you would like is not available, please try again tomorrow.
  • A new 119 telephone service is also available. This number is free to call and offers you the option to book a home testing kit over the telephone instead of through the online booking portal. This service includes Welsh language provision.
  • On booking the test you will be given further information on how the result will be provided.
  • If you have received a test result and need further information on what to do next, please visit the Public Health Wales web-site –
  • Symptomatic critical workers can use the online booking portal: to request a home testing kit. This booking portal is specific for critical workers.
  • Symptomatic critical workers can also book a slot at one of Wales’ drive through centres going through the local referral process as outlined here:



The Welsh Government is responsible for the overall coordination of booking tests for both members of the public and critical workers. You will no doubt appreciate that this information is developing at a very rapid pace. Here at PHW we will endeavour to share information with you as quickly as we can. This may mean we send an update outside of our usual rhythm of Tuesdays and Fridays. We also recommend checking the Welsh Government and PHW websites for updates on a regular basis.

Members of the public

Before requesting a test you must have at least one of the following symptoms:

  • a new continuous cough
  • a fever
  • loss of smell or taste

You need to take the test in the first 5 days of having symptoms. The test does not tell you if you have already had coronavirus.

Apply for a test online to receive a home testing kit (on NHS). You can also apply for a test for someone in your household with symptoms.

Alternatively, members of the public can apply for a home testing kit by phoning the free number 119.

People with hearing or speech difficulties can call 18001 119.

Critical workers

Health and social care workers should speak to their employer for advice on how to get tested.

For all other critical workers the quickest way to get tested may be booking at a drive-through testing centre or mobile unit.

Alternatively, request to receive a home testing kit by post (on GOV.UK).

Read more about who is a critical worker.

Test results

The system and process used to notify the results of tests varies according to the method chosen, and on booking the test you will be given further information on how the result will be provided.

If you have received a test result and need further information on what to do next, please visit Public Health Wales.