UCL News


Getting tested for COVID-19 and reporting your results

22 September 2021

Getting tested for COVID-19 and reporting your results helps to reduce the spread of the virus. It also helps to protect those who could get seriously ill if they catch the virus.

Screenshot from the video

To keep our community as safe as possible, you should test yourself twice a week for COVID-19 even if you don’t have symptoms.  

Around one in three people infected with the virus do not experience symptoms, which means they can still pass it on to others. Watch our video to find out more about getting tested and reporting your results. 

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How to get tested 

The type of COVID-19 test you take depends on whether or not you have symptoms.  

If you don’t have COVID-19 symptoms 

If you don’t have a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change of your sense of smell or taste, test yourself using a rapid lateral flow test (LFT).   

These tests can be ordered online for delivery to your home address or can be collected from UCL or a local pharmacy. Or, you can be tested at the LFT testing centre on campus by booking online.  

Whether you test yourself or are tested on campus, you’ll receive your results in approximately 30 minutes. Make sure you report the result, whether positive or negative, to both the NHS and UCL Connect to Protect

If you do have COVID-19 symptoms 

If you do have COVID-19 symptoms, you must immediately self-isolate and order a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test online. These tests are processed by a lab, so it may take between one to three days before you receive your results. You must continue to self-isolate until you receive them. 

Please follow this guide (for students) or this guide (for staff) for a step-by-step guideabout what to do and let UCL know through Connect to Protect. 

Which test is right for you? 

If you’re not sure what kind of test you need, visit our Which test is right for you? page for more information. 

Reporting your results 

Regardless of whether you’ve taken an LFT or PCR test, or whether your result is positive or negative, you will need to report the result to both the NHS and UCL Connect to Protect – our online reporting tool. 

Designed in collaboration with our public health experts, Connect to Protect helps us to monitor and respond to potential COVID-19 cases.  

It also allows us to get in touch with students and staff who test positive so that we can support them if they need it. 

By getting tested for COVID-19 and reporting our results, we can all make a difference.