Why should I get myself tested?
Corona tests help to detect coronavirus infections at an early stage and break infection chains.
If you feel ill, have a cough, a sore throat or a runny nose, these are typical symptoms of a common cold, but could also be symptoms of a coronavirus infection. It is important for you to know with certainty whether you are infected with the coronavirus or not, as only this can ensure that you don’t pass it on to others and put them at risk if you are.
Important: if you have the symptoms of a coronavirus infection, please first call your doctor and discuss the next steps you must take.
Even if you have been unknowingly infected with the virus and have none of the typical symptoms, you can still pass it on and put others – especially sick or older persons – at risk. You can prevent this happening by taking a test.
Exactly who can get a test either free of charge or for a small fee according to the German government’s current national testing strategy, and where they can get tested, can be found here and on the website at www.zusammengegencorona.de
Who can get a coronavirus test according to the current national testing strategy – and what types of tests are available?
Citizen Test in a test centre
The following persons with no symptoms of an infection can be tested free of charge with a rapid antigen test at a test centre:
- Children aged up to and including four years.
- Persons who cannot be vaccinated against the coronavirus due to medical contraindications.
This group included expecting mothers in the first third of pregnancy.
- Persons who are taking part in clinical studies to determine the effectiveness of vaccines against the coronavirus SARS CoV 2 at the time of testing or have taken part in such studies within the past three months.
- Persons who are infected with the coronavirus at the time of testing and require a negative test result to end a period of isolation.
- Visitors and staff in hospitals, clinics, retirement homes, care homes and healthcare facilities for the elderly in need of care and persons with disabilities.
- Persons who live or have lived together in the same household as a person infected with the coronavirus.
- Persons who are caring for members of their family.
- Persons with disabilities and their carers.
The following persons with no symptoms of an infection can get tested at a test centre and will be charged a fee of three euros:
- Persons intending to visit an indoor event on the same day or
- will be in contact with a person over 60 years of age or
- a person with a prior history of disease with a high risk of serious illness from a COVID-19 on the same day as the test.
- Persons who have received an ‘increased risk’ warning in the Robert Koch-Institute’s Corona Warning App on their phone.
Should you belong in this category, you must provide the test centre with proof of your entitlement by means of a voluntary personal declaration or, respectively, a doctor’s certificate and proof of identity.
Where can I get myself tested?
Pharmacies, medical practices and COVID-19 test centres provide free testing, mostly without having to make an appointment. More information about testing (in German) can be found at www.niedersachsen.de/coronavirus
What test methods do they use?
The most reliable testing method, performed by medical personnel. Often used to confirm a positive indication from a rapid antigen test or self-testing. Usually requires an appointment.
Test results are usually ready after a period of one or two days.
PoC rapid antigen testing by an official testing agency (citizen test)
Please note that according to the Federal Coronavirus Test Regulation (TestV) you are only entitled to a (free) test when you belong to the above-mentioned list of persons.
The PoC rapid antigen test will be performed by specially trained personnel. You can get the result while you wait or have it sent to you by email or SMS after 15 to 30 minutes.
Rapid antigen testing is available at many medical practices, pharmacies or test centres. An officially confirmed positive rapid antigen test must be presented before COVID-19 infection can be corroborated by means of PCR testing.
You can perform such tests yourself. Just follow the instructions. You can buy self-testing kits in pharmacies, drugstores and supermarkets.
Our measures to get us all back to a normal way of life:
COVID-19 vaccines are the best way to safeguard against serious illness and the best chance of protecting yourself, your family and those around you!Find out more
Even though it rarely happens, it is possible to contract and transmit the virus despite being vaccinated. This is why you must continue to observe the familiar rules concerning hygiene and behaviour.Find out more
If you are unaware that you have been infected with the virus, you can transmit it to the people around you, your family and your friends. This is why regular testing is so important.Find out more
This is where you can find more information about COVID-19 / coronavirus vaccination, recommended protective measures and testing.More info