COVID-19 rapid lateral flow tests are no longer free for most people.
You may still be able to get free COVID-19 rapid lateral flow tests from the NHS if you:
- have a health condition which means you're eligible for COVID-19 treatment
- work in healthcare settings or in a hospice
If you want to get tested but are not eligible for free rapid lateral flow tests, you need to pay for the test yourself.
You can buy rapid lateral flow tests from some pharmacies and retailers, in person or online.
If you work in healthcare or in a hospice
If you work in healthcare settings or in a hospice, you may be able to get free COVID-19 rapid lateral flow tests. This will depend on your job role and if you have symptoms of COVID-19. Please read the guidance and, if you are not sure of your eligibility, speak to your employer.
How to get free COVID-19 rapid lateral flow tests if you're eligible
If you are eligible for COVID-19 treatments, you may be able to pick up free COVID-19 rapid lateral flow tests from your local pharmacy.
You can find out if a pharmacy near you is offering free tests using the Find a pharmacy service.
How to check if a pharmacy offers free tests in the find a pharmacy service
- Type your postcode, which will bring up a list of local pharmacies.
- Select a pharmacy.
- Click ‘Treatments and services’ at the top of the page.
- Go to the ‘Screening and test services’ section – if the pharmacy is offering free tests, it will say ‘COVID-19 lateral flows tests (eligible NHS patients)’.
Your local integrated care board (ICB) may also be able to give you more information on where you can collect free tests.
Collecting free tests for someone else
Someone else can collect free tests on your behalf, for example, a friend, relative or carer.
Anyone collecting free tests on your behalf needs to give the pharmacy your details, including your:
- full name
- date of birth
- NHS number
- medical condition(s) to confirm your eligibility
If you’ve been sent a letter or email from the NHS about COVID-19 treatments, this should be shown to the pharmacy to help confirm your eligibility more easily.