This guidance is to support those working in sampling and laboratory investigations. This guidance covers:

  • sample collection for PCR testing
  • clinical indications for serology testing
  • protocol for reporting SARS-CoV-2 PCR positives during periods of low prevalence
  • results of testing
  • guidance for microbiologists and virologists

Further resources

The following resources are available on our workforce educational resources page.

Sampling and Testing for COVID-19

We have produced a short video clip to support colleagues required to obtain an upper respiratory tract diagnostic sample.

This resource describes the techniques involved in obtaining an upper respiratory tract COVID-19 diagnostic sample and covers the:

  • options available in relation to COVID-19 upper respiratory tract samples
  • technique involved in obtaining a nose swab
  • technique involved in obtaining a throat swab

Packaging of diagnostic samples for onward transportation

View a guidance video showing the correct way to package samples from suspected COVID-19 patients for Category B transport, in line with UN3373 requirements.

Media enquiries

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If you require publications or documents in other formats, please email phs.otherformats@phs.scot.

To report any issues with a publication, please email phs.generalpublications@phs.scot.

Last updated: 08 October 2021
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