NHS Test and Trace Service

About the NHS Test and Trace Service 

The NHS Test and Trace Service is FREE OF CHARGE, and:

The NHS will get in touch with you IF:

  • You have tested positive, or
  • You have been in contact with a proven positive case

If you test positive for coronavirus

If you have taken a coronavirus test, you will usually be contacted within 72 hours with the result.

The coronavirus test will not have been a blood test that you might have had at your GP surgery. It will have been a nose and/or throat swab.

The NHS Test and Trace service will send you a text or email alert or call you with instructions of how to share details of people with whom you have had close, recent contact and places you have visited. It is important that you respond as soon as possible so that the appropriate advice can be given to those who need it.

You will be sent a link to the NHS Test and Trace website and asked to create a confidential account where you can record details about your recent close contact. If you do not have internet access or if you don’t complete the online process, one of the NHS contact tracers will phone you to gather this information from you.

 If you are contacted by the NHS Test and Trace Service because you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus

You will be alerted to the NHS Test and Trace Service if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus. The alert will usually come by text, email or phone call.

You should then log onto the NHS Test and Trace website, which is normally the easiest way for you and the service to communicate with each other – but if not, a trained call handler will talk you through what you must do. Under 18’s will get a phone call and a parent or guardian will be asked to give permission for the call to continue.

You must self-isolate for 14 days from your last contact with the person who tested positive.

How the NHS Test and Trace Service will contact you

 If the NHS Test and Trace Service contacts you, the service will use text messages, email or phone.

If the NHS Test and Trace Service contact’s you by phone, the service will be using a single phone number: 0300 013 5000

All texts or emails will ask you to sign into the NHS Test and Trace contact-tracing website

Contact tracers will:

  • Call you from 0300 013 5000
  • Send you text messages from ‘NHStracing’
  • Ask you to sign into the NHS Test and Trace contact-tracing website
  • Ask for your full name and date of birth to confirm your identity, and postcode to offer support whilst self-isolating
  • Ask about the coronavirus symptoms you have been experiencing
  • Ask you to provide the name, telephone number and/or email address of anyone you have had close contact with in the 2 days prior to your symptoms starting
  • Ask if anyone you have been in contact with is under 18 or lives outside of England.

Contact tracers will never:

  • Ask you to dial a premium rate number (for example, those starting 09 or 087)
  • Ask you to make any form of payment or purchase a product of any kind
  • Ask for any details about your bank account
  • Ask for your social media identities or login details, or those of your contacts
  • Ask you for any passwords or PINs, or ask you to set up any passwords or PINs over the phone
  • Disclose any of your personal or medical information to your contacts
  • Provide medical advice on the treatment of any potential coronavirus symptoms
  • Ask you to download any software to your PC or ask you to hand over control of your PC, smartphone or tablet to anyone else
  • Ask you to access any website that does not belong to the government or NHS


If you do not feel comfortable talking on the phone, or you suspect the call to be a scam, you can ask for an email or a text that will invite you to use the Test and Trace website instead.

 Check the URL carefully to make sure it matches the official one. {https://contact-tracing.phe.gove.uk/}

If you have not taken a coronavirus test in the past 72 hours and you are contacted by someone telling you that you’ve tested positive, the call is not genuine. Hang up the phone or delete the text.

If you are called by someone claiming to be from the NHS Test and Trace Service, and the caller ID is another number, or is hidden, hang up the phone.

For more information see