Free rapid lateral flow device tests for adults in Tayside and Fife are available to order online. But why do we need them, how do you carry out a test and where do you get one?
Adults aged over 18 who do not have Covid-19 symptoms are being encouraged to test two times a week.
If you plan to travel to a Scottish island you are encouraged to take a test. However, these are not suitable if you need to take a test for international travel.
Why is it important I take a test?
- One in three people with the virus does not show symptoms, so can spread it to others without knowing.
- Regular testing helps find positive cases in people who have no symptoms, but who are still infectious. If people who test positive self-isolate, the chain of transmission is broken and it helps to limit the spread of coronavirus.
- A negative lateral flow device (LFD) test does not guarantee that you do not have coronavirus. You must continue to follow FACTS and restrictions in place in your area.
How do I carry out the test?
- A lateral flow device (LFD) test usually involves taking a sample from your throat and nose using a swab. Results are available in 30 minutes.
- Do not eat or drink for 30 minutes before taking a test.
- You must swab your tonsils (or where they would be) and nose without anything touching the tip of the swab, so you may need to remove piercings.
- Read the instructions that come with your test kit.
- Once you have removed the test strip from the packet you must start it within 30 minutes.
- Clean and dry a flat surface and sanitise your hands before you start.
- Professor Jason Leitch explains the specific steps to take a test – including swabbing your tonsils (four times on each side) and nostril (10 times) in this video:
Your test result will show on the test strip 30 minutes after taking the test and you must read your result at exactly 30 minutes.
How do I tell what the result is?
You must report your result whether it is positive, negative or void.
Full details of how to report your test and what to do next are available on the NHS Inform website.
- If you have two lines (one next to C and one next to T), your test is positive.
If you or anyone in your household tests positive, everyone in the household must:
Self-isolate immediately – financial and practical support is available,
Contact tracing will begin when you report a positive test result.
- If there is one line next to C (and no line next to T), your LFD test is negative.
A negative test is not a guarantee that you do not have coronavirus. It only reflects a specific point in time. You must report your negative result and continue to follow FACTS guidance.
If you develop coronavirus symptoms you must self-isolate and book a PCR test.
- If there is one line next to T (and no line next to C), or no lines, your test is void. This means your test did not run correctly.
You must report the result and take another LFD test using a new test kit – do not reuse anything from the first kit.
If your test fails for a second time, you should book a PCR test.
You do not need to self-isolate after two void results, but you must continue to follow FACTS guidance.
Who can order a test?
- Rapid lateral flow testing kits for twice weekly testing are available for adults over the age of 18.
- Testing is not recommended for children who go to primary school or who are younger.
- Tests are for people who do not have symptoms of the virus and who have not been told to self isolate.
You should not order rapid lateral flow testing kits if you have tested positive for Covid-19 in the previous 90 days or get tested through your workplace or education setting.
Where can I get a testing kit?
Home testing kits are available to order for free online.
Your order will contain one pack of seven tests.
It will be delivered to your home in one to two days. You can order one pack per household per day.
They are also available to collect from some Covid-19 test sites in Fife and Tayside.