Our COVID-19 PCR home swabbing kit
Home test kit to detect the presence of the Covid-19 virus
Simple and gentle lower nasal and throat swab
Convenient Royal Mail pre-paid return included
Results typically within 24 to 48 hours after receiving the swab at the lab
Accredited laboratory analysing the test and providing the results
Gold Standard PCR Covid-19 Testing methodology
Government Listed Provider
Our laboratory is trusted by world-renowned hospitals
This test is processed by HCA Laboratories, which is part of HCA Healthcare: one of the largest providers of private healthcare in the country. So, as well as carrying out thousands of tests daily for GP surgeries, hospitals and other clients across the UK, the lab supports world-famous HCA hospitals such as The Portland, The Princess Grace, The Harley Street Clinic and London Bridge Hospital.
How it works in 4 simple steps to complete the test
This test shows whether you are currently infected with Covid-19. It is useful if you are showing symptoms of the virus, you have come into contact with an infected person or you require proof of a negative result for a RT-PCR test at the time of taking.
ORDER OUR COVID PCR TEST
Once you’ve ordered, our customer service team will get in touch to clarify how everything will work. Then you’ll receive your test kit in the post.
TAKE YOUR SWAB AT HOME
Following the instructions, perform a simple nasal and throat swab – if you’re unable to do this yourself, the instructions explain how someone can help you.
The test should only be performed on the person whose name is on the kit, and it is not for anyone under the age of 5.
RETURN THE SWAB TO US BY PLACING IT IN THE NEAREST POST BOX
Please return your swab to us immediately after taking it, to give our lab teams as much time as possible to analyse and share your results.
WAIT FOR YOUR RESULTS
We’ll send you an official pathology report via email within 24 TO 48 hours.
How to take your swab and return it to us
1. WASH YOUR HANDS
Wash your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds using soap and water.
2. Unpack your kit
Check if your kit contains all items
3. FIND YOUR TONSILS
Use a mirror to find your tonsils. Alternatively, if your tonsils have been removed find where your tonsils would have been.
4. BLOW YOUR NOSE
Blow your nose gently and cough into a tissue, then throw the tissue away in a bin.
5. OPEN THE SWAB PACKAGE
Be careful not to touch the soft end of the swab on anything except for your tonsils or nose when completing the test.
6. Complete the throat swab
Holding the swab in your hand, open your mouth and gently rub the swab over your tonsils and back of your throat for 10 seconds, then remove from the back of your throat. Looking in a mirror to help you do this.
7. Complete the nasal swab
Place the same end of the same swab gently into your nostril approximately 1 inch (2.5cm), or until you feel resistance. Rotate the swab for 15 seconds and slowly remove it. Using the same swab, repeat for second nostril.
8. Place the swab in the vial
Place the swab in the plastic vial with the fabric tip facing down. Snap off the other end of the swab so that it fits into the vial. Place the lid back on the vial and ensure it is fastened. Please make sure you assign the label with patient details to the tube.
9. PACK YOUR SAMPLE
Place the plastic vial and the absorbant sheet into the sealable plastic bag.
10. Secure your sample
Place the plastic bag inside the biohazard bag and seal the biohazard bag.
10. COMPLETE THE REQUEST FORM
Ensure the Name and DOB on the Request Form are exactly as on the vial.
Complete time and date swabbed and then sign the patient form.
12. RETURN THE SAMPLE IMMEDIATELY
Place the biohazard bag and the patient form inside the box and seal it with the silver security seal. Place the box in the return bag and, depending on the option you chose when you ordered, give it to your courier or drop it at your allocated drop-off point straight away.
Do you have any unanswered questions
Reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis is the gold-standard for COVID-19 detection, confirming the presence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in a sample.
The test has a higher than 98% accuracy rate and is carried by our accredited laboratory.
We will aim to report results within up 72 hours of receiving the swab.
This test requires a combined nose and throat swab using a flocked oral swab returned to the labs in the dry tube provided.
This test only indicates whether you have a current COVID-19 infection. It does NOT test for antibodies and can not indicate whether you have been infected previously.
The kits can last 2 years unopened.
- A sample is taken with a swab of the inside of your nose and the back of your throat.
- That sample is sent to a laboratory to check if coronavirus is present.
- You will be informed within 24 to 72 hours about the outcome of the test.
The test should not be administered to any patient under the age of 5 years.
Once the full instructions have been completed and the completed test placed in the pre paid return envelope, it should be posted via Royal Mail on the same day the test was taken ensuring collection that day.
The Covid-19 RT-PCR testing contains:
• 1 plastic tube (vial) with patient detail label attached
• 1 dry swab
• 1 sealable plastic bag
• 1 biohazard bag with silver seal
• 1 absorbent sheet
• 1 box and security seal
• 1 patient details form
• 1 booklet
• 1 Royal Mail pre-paid return envelope to HCA Laboratories
The sample is only viable for a couple of days on the specialised swabs so we recommend that you return the sample to the lab as quickly as possible after swabbing. It is preferred that you swab in the morning, and you post the pack back to the laboratory at a post-box that has collection later that same day.
You should not post your results on a Saturday or Sunday, as these could be delayed.
The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- a 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)
- a 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
Most people with coronavirus have at least 1 of these symptoms.
You'll get an email with your result when it's ready.
Most people get their test results within 2 days of the sample arriving in the Laboratory, but it could take up to 5 days.
There are two types of result you can get:
- -Not Detected
A negative result means the test did not find coronavirus in the sample submitted.
You do not need to self-isolate if your test is negative, as long as:
- - everyone you live with who has symptoms tests negative
- - everyone in your support bubble who has symptoms tests negative
- - you were not told to self-isolate for 14 days by NHS Test and Trace – if you were, see what to do if you've been told you've been in contact with someone who has coronavirus
- - you feel well – if you feel unwell, stay at home until you’re feeling better
If you have diarrhoea or you’re being sick, stay at home until 48 hours after they've stopped.
A positive result means you had coronavirus when the test was done.
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