Coronavirus test: General public, shielded or housebound patients – Easy Read

What are the symptoms of coronavirus?

The main symptoms of coronavirus are a cough, a high temperature and loss of taste or smell.

Some people with the virus will also find it harder to breathe.

Most people who have the virus will get better without needing any treatment.

But some people may become very unwell and need to go to hospital.

What to do if you think you have coronavirus

The symptoms of coronavirus are a high temperature, a cough that doesn’t go away and a loss of taste and smell.

If you have one, some or all of these symptoms, you might have coronavirus, and you should try to find out if you do.

Do not go to your doctors in person if you think you have coronavirus, give them a call and ask for their advice on what to do.

Contact NHS 119 straight away, a new telephone number to be used to request a Coronavirus test. This will tell you what you need to do next.

You can do this online by visiting the NHS 111 online service.

They may tell you to stay at home and not be near other people for several days – this is called self-isolating.

When to self-isolate

If you or someone you live with has a high temperature or a cough you should stay at home completely – do not even go out to the shops or for exercise.

The government have said that if you live with friends and/or family you need to stay at home for 14 days (which is the same as 2 weeks).

If you live on your own, you still need to self-isolate, but you will only need to do this for 7 days (which is the same as 1 week).

How to help stop coronavirus spreading

To help stop the spread of coronavirus the government have said that everyone must stay at home as much as possible.

You can leave home to:

  • shop
  • exercise
  • spend time outdoors
  • get medical treatment.

You should only be travelling to work if you really have to.

As well as this, you can help to stop the spread of coronavirus by:

  • covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze
  • putting any tissues you use in a bin
  • coughing or sneezing into your sleeve instead of your hand, if you don’t have a tissue
  • trying not to touch your eyes, nose and mouth with your hands
  • wearing a face covering on public transport.
  • It is really important that you wash your hands carefully and regularly. You should do this after coughing or sneezing and before eating any food. You should always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • When you go out, you must follow social distancing rules. This means keeping 2 metres apart from people who are not from your household.

An easy read version is available for swabbing – what it is and how Coronavirus tests are done.

An easy read version is also available for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – what it is and why health and care staff are wearing more PPE at the moment.