COVID-19 Test & Protect

Test and Protect is NHS Scotland’s new approach to controlling the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in the community.  The system will help to prevent the virus from spreading, by testing those who have symptoms and then tracing and isolating any close contacts of those who have symptoms.  It will only work if we all play our part:

  • Get tested if you have symptoms
  • Provide information to trace possible contacts
  • Isolate when asked to do so


If you have any COVID-19 symptoms - a new continuous cough, temperature, loss or change of taste or smell - you should immediately:
Visit NHS Inform
Call 0800 028 2816 if you can’t get online. 

Do this as soon as you suspect you have symptoms. The quicker the NHS can tell if you have the virus, the better chance we have of stop it spreading.

When you contact the NHS you will be able to book a test or order a home testing kit.  While you wait for your test result, you and everyone in your household must self-isolate.

If you test positive, you will need to self-isolate for 7 days, and your household for 14 days.


Now that lockdown measures are being eased, if you test positive, your close contacts need to traced and advised to isolate for 14 days to keep the virus suppressed.

Contact tracers will ask who you have been in close contact with. This includes people in your household, people you have had direct face to face contact with for any length of time, and those you have been within 2 metres of for 15 minutes or more.

Test & Protect is completely confidential.  When anyone you have been near is contacted, they will not be told who it is that they have been in contact with. This information is only used by NHS Scotland to trace your contacts.  No other organisation, including the Scottish Government will have access to it.

If you receive a call or a message from a contact tracer to say you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, you will be asked to self-isolate immediately. You must do this in order to stop the spread of the virus.

The best way to avoid having to isolate, is to follow the rules on physical distancing and stay 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your own household.

Further Support and Information

Test and Protect will be in place until we know we have fully suppressed the virus, or there is a treatment or a vaccine that we can be confident will protect people properly.

For more information on Test & Protect, you can visit:  

NHS Inform
Scottish Government

For Test & Protect advice for Employers, you can visit:

If you have to self-isolate and have no friends of family to help and support, you can call the National Assistance Helpline on 0800 111 4000 (Mon-Fri, 9am – 5pm)

Or visit our Covid-19 Community Support web page: