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Who is eligible for testing and how to get a test.

First published:
18 May 2020
Last updated:

Eligibility for free testing NHS COVID-19 lateral flow testing

Most people in Wales are no longer advised to take a lateral flow test if they have symptoms of COVID-19. You can find guidance for people with symptoms of a respiratory infection, including COVID-19 here.

How to get a test

You can get free tests if you're included in one of the groups who are eligible for COVID-19 treatments.  

If you're unsure if you are eligible, speak to your doctor or hospital specialist who can advise you.

If you are eligible, tests can be collected from a community pharmacy.

If you visit a pharmacy to get a supply of tests you may be asked about your medical history to confirm your eligibility. If you have a copy of a letter or email sent to you by the NHS that says you are eligible for COVID-19 treatment, take this with you. A letter or email is not essential, but it will help the pharmacy to confirm you’re eligible for free tests more easily. 

Someone else can collect tests on your behalf, for example, a friend, relative or carer. They will need to give the pharmacy your details, including your: 

  • full name
  • address
  • date of birth
  • NHS number (if available)
  • medical condition(s) to confirm your eligibility

They should also bring any copies of letters or emails that have been sent to you by the NHS about COVID-19 treatments if you have them.

Find a pharmacy near you that supplies NHS lateral flow tests

If you wish to test but are not eligible for free lateral flow tests, you can purchase them from various retailers.

If you need medical advice about your symptoms

Visit the 111 online coronavirus symptom checker or your GP if you feel your symptoms aren’t improving or you need advice. If you don’t have internet access, you can call 111. (Rydym yn croesawu galwadau’n Gymraeg / We welcome calls in Welsh).

In a medical emergency only, dial 999 and inform the call handler or operator that you or your relative has COVID-19 symptoms.