Changes to PCR Tests in England

From 11 January, most people


 with a positive lateral flow test do not need to take a confirmatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test to confirm they have COVID-19.

If you test positive on a lateral flow device (LFD) test you should self-isolate immediately and register your result on GOV.UK so that NHS Test and Trace can trace your contacts.

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said:

Our world-leading testing system is protecting millions of people from COVID-19.

Since the emergence of the Omicron variant, the public has been playing their part with hundreds of thousands coming forward to get tested and jabbed every day.

Today’s change will help ensure those who need PCR tests can access them, and I encourage everyone to keep using our highly accurate lateral flow tests regularly and to Get Boosted Now.

So when do you need to take a PCR Test?

  1. People who wish to claim the Test and Trace Support Payment. To claim the Test and Trace Support Payment, you must have tested positive for COVID-19 following a PCR test or an assisted LFD test.
  2. People who have received an email or letter from the NHS because of a health condition that means they may be suitable for new COVID-19 treatments. This applies when they develop any COVID-19 symptoms, and they should use the PCR test kit that was sent to them in the post for this purpose. If they have not received a PCR test kit they can arrange to have a PCR test.
  3. People who are taking LFD tests as part of research or surveillance programmes, and the programme asks them to take a follow-up PCR test.
  4. People who have a positive day 2 LFD test result after they arrive in England.

More information and the full article can be found on the website.

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