Test & Trace FAQ’s

The Test and Trace service is an important weapon against the Coronavirus in the UK. Here’s the Government’s latest FAQ on the subject based on questions form the general public.


How do I know that I’m being contacted by an authorised NHS contact tracer?

The NHS Test and Trace service will contact you by email, text message or phone. If the service calls you, it will be from 0300 0135000. If it texts you, it will be from ‘NHStracing’.

You’ll be asked to sign into the NHS Test and Trace website. You’ll then need to provide your contact information, as well as details of the places you’ve been and the people you’ve been in close contact with.

You will not be asked:

  • for bank details or to make a payment
  • for details of any other accounts, such as your social media
  • to set up a password or PIN number over the phone
  • to call a premium rate number, such as those starting 09 or 087
  • for anyone to visit you at home

Children under 18 will be contacted by phone wherever possible and asked for their parent’s or guardian’s permission to continue the call.

What if I’ve already had coronavirus? Will I still need to self-isolate?

You will be told to self-isolate, even if you have had coronavirus before. This is because there is no guarantee that someone who has already had coronavirus cannot get it again or pass it onto other people.

Will I be asked to self-isolate repeatedly?

If you have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus then you need to self-isolate. It does not matter whether you have self-isolated before.

You will significantly reduce the risk of needing to self-isolate if you follow the social distancing rules. This will reduce the chance of you coming into close contact with someone who has the virus. Close contact is spending over one minute with someone at a distance of one metre, or over 15 minutes at a distance of 2 metres. It could also happen in a restricted space, like a car. Following the workplace guidance will help you to keep a safe distance from people at work.

How long do I have to wait for my results, after I have been tested?

You should get your test results back within 48 hours, if you are tested at a regional test centre or mobile testing unit. We are aiming to reduce this to 24 hours by the end of June. Tests which are posted may take longer.

You must self-isolate while you wait to get your test results. If you are being tested because you are displaying symptoms, then members of your household must also self-isolate until you get the results. You should inform others with whom you have been in close contact that you are displaying symptoms. They do not need to self-isolate unless you receive a positive test result.

NHS Test and Trace

Social distancing

Working safely during coronavirus