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Book a Covid-19 test if you have symptoms

Posted on: 17 July 2020

NHS Test and Trace is a national programme working to make sure that anyone who develops Covid-19 symptoms can be tested quickly. The service also helps trace recent contacts of anyone who tests positive and if necessary, notify them so that they can stay at home and help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

The Test and Trace service is essential for helping to keep Tower Hamlets safe and drive down the rates of infection and transmission.


If you get symptoms of coronavirus

If you think you may have any of the below coronavirus symptom, you must immediately self-isolate.

  • High temperature
  • A new, continuous cough
  • Loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell


If you have any of the above symptoms of coronavirus

  • use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service to check your symptoms – call 111 if you cannot get help online
  • If you have any symptoms, you must immediately book a coronavirus test either online or by calling 119
  • anyone you live with must self-isolate until you've been tested and received your result

Testing is available for anyone who has symptoms, and children under the age of five will need a clinical assessment first. Please call your GP or NHS 111 to arrange an assessment for your child.


What to do while you wait for your test result

While you wait for test results you must remain self-isolated. Anyone else in your household should also self-isolate for 14 days from when you started having symptoms. You should tell anyone you have been in close contact with in the past 48 hours that you might have coronavirus.


What to do when you get your test result


If you test negative (you do not have coronavirus):

  • you and members of your household no longer need to self-isolate
  • If you test positive, you must continue to self-isolate for at least 7 days from when symptoms started.
  • Members of your household must complete 14 days of self-isolation from when you first showed symptoms.


If you test positive (you have coronavirus):

Within 24 hours you will receive a text or email from NHS Test and Trace. Tracing everyone who may have been in direct contact with someone with coronavirus is an essential part of stopping the spread of the virus.

The test or email will contain instructions on how to share details of the people you have been in close, recent contact with. This includes family or other people you live, with as well as people you have been in direct contact with, or within 2 metres of, for more than 15 minutes. You will also need to advise them of places you have recently visited.


If you test positive, you must:

  • self-isolate for at least 7 days from when your symptoms started – even if it means you're self-isolating for longer than 14 days
  • anyone you live with must self-isolate for 14 days from when your symptoms started

Read more about when to self isolate and what to do.


If you do not get symptoms of coronavirus

If you do not have any symptoms of coronavirus:

  • you can stop self-isolating after 14 days
  • you do not need to have a test


How NHS Test and Trace will contact you

  • You'll be contacted by email, text or phone.
  • Text messages will come from the NHS. Calls will come from a Contact Tracer calling on 0300 0135000.
  • Children under 18 will be contacted by phone wherever possible and asked for their parent or guardian's permission to continue the call.
  • You'll be asked to sign in to the NHS Test and Trace contact tracing website at

If you cannot use the contact tracing website, they will call you.


The information you provide will be used to alert those most at risk of having the virus that need to self-isolate.

Please note: No one contacted as a result of you testing positive for coronavirus will be told your identity.