Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Covid Scotland: When should you take lateral flow test as Omicron variant surges?

Post Thumbnail

Lateral flow before you go – that’s the message from the Scottish Government as Omicron cases increase.

As the number of the new variant cases get higher, we all need to test more to try and curb the spread.

You can also now show a lateral flow test in some venues instead of proof of vaccination through the Covid vaccine passport scheme.

But did you know lateral flow tests have changed and there are different types now being used?

Where do you get them, do you still have to swab both nose and throat – and when should you be doing them? We’re answering your questions.

Lateral flow test.

When do I need to do a test?

Up until now, we’ve all been asked to test twice a week.

But from December 6, a negative lateral flow test can be used instead of your Covid passport to get into certain venues and events.

As Omicron cases have emerged, Nicola Sturgeon has advised testing BEFORE you socialise, visit a crowded indoor place or intend to mix with another household group.

If you do a test and it is positive, don’t go out, isolate and book a PCR test.

Where can I get a test kit?

There are a number of different ways you can get lateral flow tests:

  • Order them online or call 119. You’ll get one pack of seven tests sent to your home in one to two days.
  • Pick them up at some local test centres. Collect two packs of seven tests per household or up to four packs of seven tests if collecting for multiple people.
  • Collect from a local participating pharmacy. You can collect one pack of seven tests for each member of your household.
  • Pop into a local asymptomatic test centre in Tayside or Fife. Again, it’s one pack of seven tests for each member of your household.
Three packs of covid home test kits
There are now alternatives to these nose and throat swab tests.

Remember, if you have Covid symptoms, don’t visit a pharmacy or community testing centre. Instead, book a PCR test and isolate.

Do you still have to swab nose and throat when taking a test?

It depends on the type of test. When home testing first began, the kits asked you to swab the inside of your throat AND nose.

But now, different types are being used which may mean you only have to swab your nose.

The tests which may be sent to your home are:

  • Throat and nose swab test – plain NHS blue and white box.
  • Nose only swab test – blue and white box (ACON Flowflex).
  • Nose only swab test – green and white box (Orient Gene).

How will I know what to do?

Full step by step instructions can be found inside the test kit and also on these online videos.

NHS test

ACON Flowflex

Orient Gene

Your test is not complete until you report your result online or by phone on 119, and you receive a result confirmation notification.

You should do this, whatever the outcome, on the day you take the test.

For information on how to use your test for entry into venues see our explainer here.

Already a subscriber? Sign in