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Your coronavirus test result

This information is about coronavirus (COVID-19) swab tests.

Getting your test result

You’ll usually get a text or email with your result when it’s ready. If you use the NHS COVID-19 app, you may also get your result in the app.

How long it takes to get your result depends on the type of swab test you had.

Rapid swab tests

If you had a rapid swab test (lateral flow test), you should get your result within 2 hours.

Get another rapid swab test if you do not get your result within 12 hours.

Other swab tests

If you had a swab test that is sent to a lab (PCR test), it takes longer to get your result. Most people get their result the next day, but it may take up to 3 days.

If you have symptoms, you and anyone you live with should stay at home (self-isolate) until you get your result.

If you do not get your result by day 6, call:

  • 119 (England, Wales and Northern Ireland)
  • 0300 303 2713 (Scotland)

The call centre is open from 7am to 11pm.

Negative test result

A negative result means the test did not find coronavirus.

You do not usually need to self-isolate if you get a negative result.

But you may still need to self-isolate if:

  • someone you live with has tested positive – find out how long to self-isolate
  • you’ve been told you’ve been in contact with someone who tested positive – find out what to do if you’re told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace
  • you’re going into hospital – keep self-isolating until you go in

If you still feel unwell after a negative test, stay at home until you’re feeling better. Contact a GP if your symptoms get worse or do not go away.

If you’re being sick, have diarrhoea or have a high temperature, stay at home until 48 hours after they’ve stopped.

Check with your employer before going back to work.

Positive test result

A positive result means the test found signs of coronavirus.

You and anyone you live with should self-isolate immediately.

What you need to do next depends on the type of swab test you had.

Rapid swab tests

If you had a positive rapid swab test (lateral flow test):

  • get another type of test that is sent to a lab (PCR test) as soon as possible to confirm the result – follow any instructions you’re given or get a test to check if you have coronavirus on GOV.UK
  • you and anyone you live with should self-isolate until you get the result of the 2nd test

Other swab tests

If you had a positive swab test that was sent to a lab (PCR test):

  • you do not need another test
  • you and anyone you live with must self-isolate until you’re no longer infectious (usually until 10 full days after your symptoms started or you had the test) – find out how long to self-isolate
  • you may be contacted by the NHS or your local council and asked for information to help the NHS alert your close contacts

Important

It’s a legal requirement to self-isolate if you have a positive PCR test. You could be fined if you do not self-isolate.

Sample could not be read

If your sample could not be read, it means it’s not possible to say if you had coronavirus when the test was done.

Get another test as soon as possible if this happens.

If you had a test because you had symptoms, you and anyone you live with should self-isolate until you get the result of the 2nd test.

If you have not had symptoms, you and anyone you live with do not need to self-isolate until you get the result of the 2nd test.

Urgent advice: If you need medical advice about your symptoms:

  • England: NHS 111 online coronavirus service
  • Scotland: NHS inform
  • Wales: NHS 111 Wales
  • Northern Ireland: get advice from a GP or GP out-of-hours service

Call 999 if you feel very unwell or think there’s something seriously wrong.

More in Testing and tracing for coronavirus

Page last reviewed: 7 January 2021
Next review due: 21 January 2021

Find out how you get your test result and what your result means if you've had a swab test for coronavirus (COVID-19).

Logical operators

There are three logical operators in JavaScript: || (OR), && (AND), ! (NOT).

Although they are called “logical”, they can be applied to values of any type, not only boolean. Their result can also be of any type.

Let’s see the details.

The “OR” operator is represented with two vertical line symbols:

In classical programming, the logical OR is meant to manipulate boolean values only. If any of its arguments are true , it returns true , otherwise it returns false .

In JavaScript, the operator is a little bit trickier and more powerful. But first, let’s see what happens with boolean values.

There are four possible logical combinations:

As we can see, the result is always true except for the case when both operands are false .

If an operand is not a boolean, it’s converted to a boolean for the evaluation.

For instance, the number 1 is treated as true , the number 0 as false :

Most of the time, OR || is used in an if statement to test if any of the given conditions is true .

We can pass more conditions:

OR “||” finds the first truthy value

The logic described above is somewhat classical. Now, let’s bring in the “extra” features of JavaScript.

The extended algorithm works as follows.

Given multiple OR’ed values:

The OR || operator does the following:

  • Evaluates operands from left to right.
  • For each operand, converts it to boolean. If the result is true , stops and returns the original value of that operand.
  • If all operands have been evaluated (i.e. all were false ), returns the last operand.

A value is returned in its original form, without the conversion.

In other words, a chain of OR || returns the first truthy value or the last one if no truthy value is found.

This leads to some interesting usage compared to a “pure, classical, boolean-only OR”.

Getting the first truthy value from a list of variables or expressions.

For instance, we have firstName , lastName and nickName variables, all optional (i.e. can be undefined or have falsy values).

Let’s use OR || to choose the one that has the data and show it (or “Anonymous” if nothing set):

If all variables were falsy, “Anonymous” would show up.

Short-circuit evaluation.

Another feature of OR || operator is the so-called “short-circuit” evaluation.

It means that || processes its arguments until the first truthy value is reached, and then the value is returned immediately, without even touching the other argument.

That importance of this feature becomes obvious if an operand isn’t just a value, but an expression with a side effect, such as a variable assignment or a function call.

In the example below, only the second message is printed:

In the first line, the OR || operator stops the evaluation immediately upon seeing true , so the alert isn’t run.

Sometimes, people use this feature to execute commands only if the condition on the left part is falsy.

The AND operator is represented with two ampersands && :

In classical programming, AND returns true if both operands are truthy and false otherwise:

Logical operators There are three logical operators in JavaScript: || (OR), && (AND), ! (NOT). Although they are called “logical”, they can be applied to values of any type, not only boolean. ]]>