Human Medicine:

Test To Release – FAQs

Frequently Answered Questions

We have compiled some FAQs below. We ask you to review these as they should answer your questions about the Test to Release process.

If you would like to search the FAQs, please start typing in the field below.

The government have launched a testing strategy for passengers arriving into England to be introduced from 15 December 2020.
10-day self-isolation period reduced on receipt of a negative COVID-19 test from a private provider after 5 days of isolation.

  • Each test will cost £99.99 for a home test kit
  • Some UK airports are working in partnership with SYNLAB for ‘Test to Release’ offering a discounted price
  • You will need your flight details to book a home test kit
  • Order your test here.
  • You must have opted into the Test To Release scheme on your Passenger Locator Form (PLF) before you can book a test – click here for details.
  • Test To Release tests must be ordered before or on the day of arrival.
  • Tests cannot be ordered after your arrival date.
  • You will receive your test result 24 hours after your sample arrives at the laboratory.
  • You must use the SYNLAB Track 24 postal envelope to send your sample to the laboratory – make a note of your Track 24 reference number under the barcode.
  • You must post your sample the same day it is collected and only post it in a Royal Mail Priority Postboxclick here to find you nearest Royal Mail Priority Postbox and to check the collection times.
  • Your result will be available by logging on to the DocHQ portal.
  • You will receive an email to let you know that your result has been uploaded as soon as your result are ready.
  • Click here to view the Test To Release process which shows when you can take the test and when you will receive your results.
  • The SYNLAB test is for home testing on the 5th full day of isolation, you need to order your kit and use the order reference number on the PLF.
  • Your Home testing kit will be dispatched to arrive on your 5th day of isolation in time for your virtual appointment
  • You will receive a tracking reference number by email

Note: Home test kit will not be delivered on a Sunday, they will be delivered the next day

  • You can order your home test here
  • You can order tests for up to 6 people per transaction here
  • You will be sent a confirmation email regarding your purchase once you have paid – if you do not receive an email check your junk or spam mailbox
  • Kits will be sent to your chosen postal address via Royal Mail track 48 – you will receive Royal Mail emails for tracking purposes

If you have looked thought the questions and cannot find what you need you can contact us:

On the order a home test page, check the box for ‘I am only returning to the UK’

On arrival in England (from outside the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man) you must self-isolate for 10 days – following UK Government guidance you can take a Test To Release test after 5 full days of self-isolation. You must continue to self-isolate while you await your Test To Release test result.

You leave a country on Monday morning and arrive in England on Monday afternoon. Tuesday will be your first full day of self-isolation. You can take a test no earlier than your 5th full day of self-isolation – Saturday.

Click here to view the Test To Release process which shows when you can take the test and when you will receive your results.

You can only take your test from Day 5 so you will receive the test kit on Day 5 in the post for your virtual appointment.  The video will show you how to take your PCR swab, complete the paper work and package the sample.

You must post back to the laboratory in a Priority post box the same day, check on the Royal Mail website for the nearest Priority post box.

The Test to Release for International Travel scheme is for people who need to self-isolate on arrival in England.

How to take part in the scheme. To take part in the scheme you need to:

  • SYNLAB are an Approved Provider for the Government Test to Release scheme, to opt in you need to purchase a kit, you will need your flight details
  • Use the order reference number on your passenger locator form

To complete the PLF form you need:

  • your passport details
  • your travel details, including times and dates of flights
  • the address where you will stay in the UK (if applicable)
  • You can submit the form any time in the 48 hours before you arrive in the UK.
  • You can include multiple journeys in your form if you’ll enter the UK more than once in a 48-hour period.
  • You may be fined if you have not completed the form by the time you reach the UK border. You also may not be allowed to enter the UK (unless you’re either British or a UK resident).
  • For Bristol airport passengers the test is £59.99 per passenger. Order your test here.
  • You will need to enter flight details into Bristol Airport to get the discounted price

Yes, our PCR is suitable for children of all ages using the throat and nasal home test kits. (same as the kits used in the NHS testing)

It is a throat and nasal swab which takes a few seconds.

The Test to Release scheme started on 15th December. You cannot opt into the scheme before then. If you have arrived into the UK from the 10th of December you can opt in on the PLF to have a test.

The Test to Release for International Travel scheme is for people who need to self-isolate on arrival in England.

Under the scheme you can choose to pay for a private COVID-19 test. If the result is negative, you can stop self-isolating.

The earliest you can take the test is 5 full days after you left a place not on the travel corridor list.

The scheme is voluntary and applies to those self-isolating in England only.

If you do not want to opt into the Test to Release scheme, you will need to self isolate until 10 full days have passed since were last in a place not on the travel corridors list.

SYNLAB is UKAS Accredited laboratory and the PCR tests conform to ISO 15189.

  • SYNLAB UK laboratories and doctors are regulated and compliant with the requisite regulations and insurance to administer and process testing.
  • We train all our staff to undertake their duties in line with regulatory protocol. All our devices are CE-IVD approved and conform to the highest standards.
  • SYNLAB UK & Ireland are a Government Approved test to release laboratory
  • The PCR test is the gold standard in COVID-19 testing, and are fully CE-IVD certified.
  • We only recruit and train specialist scientific and technical staff to operate these instruments in our accredited laboratories in accordance with stringent biosafety standards.

DocHQ Ltd is a Health Tech company improving choices. We help you connect efficiently to health support and advice whether you are at home, work or travelling.

  • DocHQ are digital healthcare providers
  • In this process DocHQ provide technical support to SYNLAB UK
  • Ordering and booking
  • Provide medical background information
  • Provision of result certificates to the customer
  • SYNLAB provide laboratory, diagnostic and advisory services to a diverse range of sectors, from healthcare, wellness and veterinary, to food, family law and transport.
  • They carry out over 25 million tests every year and employ more than 1,300 people across the UK and Ireland.
  • SYNLAB is committed to advancing scientific and clinical practice through innovation, research and development. All laboratories comply with industry standards and hold the accreditation’s relevant to their field of work.
  • SYNLAB work with the NHS (National Health Service) through a number of hospital partnership providing access to state-of-the-art laboratories and diagnostic services.
  • SYNLAB UK & Ireland is part of SYNLAB Group, Europe’s leading medical diagnostic services provider. SYNLAB Group operates in more than forty countries across four continents and carries out 500 million laboratory tests every year.
  • All information collected and supplied to DocHQ will be treated as strictly private and confidential and all data will be held in strict accordance with, and as long as required, under UK regulatory codes of practice on records management and data privacy laws.
  • Records are retained in digital form in a secure and encrypted environment. We maintain our own internal Data Retention Policy, on which staff are trained and it is regularly reviewed to ensure total compliance with industry best practices.
  • When you visit our Website, we may automatically collect additional information about you, i.e. the type of internet browser you are using, the website from which you have come from to our Website and your IP address (the unique address which identifies your computer on the internet), which is automatically recognised by our server. You cannot be identified from this information and it is only used to assist and enable us in providing an efficient effective service on the Website.
  • A swab is taken from the throat and nasal passage. It is a quick test and does not hurt.
  • It can be uncomfortable as it is a throat and nasal swab which to needs to be done correctly to enable the sample to be viable.
  • Your video appointment will support and guide you through the testing process correctly.
  • You are now able to come out of isolation
  • Please be aware that the test results are only valid for the time and date that you did the swab, any potential infection after this point can not be ruled out.
  • There is a slight chance of a false negative result which is vastly dependant on how accurately the swab test was performed
  • If you test negative but are suffering from coronavirus symptoms you must remain in isolation.
  • For further guidance on self-isolation, read here
  • If you received a positive COVID-19 test result at the time the test was carried out you must self-isolate for the next ten days
  • For further guidance on self-isolation, read here .
  • We will notify the UK Public Health authority and NHS Test and Trace, who will contact you with further information.
  • It is the passenger’s responsibility to check COVID-19 testing requirements on arrival to the UK.
  • Requirements for entry to countries during the COVID-19 pandemic may differ and it is your responsibility to ensure that you have all the necessary documentation and information before you travel. You can check individual country details at this link.
  • If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, we advise you to contact the NHS by calling 111.
  • For a full list of COVID-19 symptoms, read the NHS guidance here.
  • You can log in to DocHQ portal to reschedule your appointment but needs to be from Day 5 only
  • You cannot cancel for refunds as this is a government scheme based on your Passenger locator form(PLF) and not refundable.
  • There are no refunds if the test is not taken as part of this scheme and you must quarantine for 10 days as per government rules

You will taking a swab test yourself with guidance from a virtual video appointment from the comfort of your own home.

  • A PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) test is an antigen test and is used to detect a virus’ genetic material (DNA/RNA) from a throat and nasal swab.
  • This type of test is very accurate and is considered to be the gold standard in COVID-19 testing and is used by the NHS.

The Test to Release COVID-19 test must be a PCR swab.

PCR Testing is the most sensitive test that is currently available, able to detect active infection some days before the patient is infectious or symptomatic. It is the gold standard test; used in the NHS daily.

The test offered by SYNLAB will be COVID-19 PCR Swab Test (PCR-RNA SARS-CoV-2) to provide peace of mind to customers as part of the new Test to Release scheme available from 15th December 2020 to all passengers returning to England wishing to reduce the quarantine period.

PCR testing is performed in machines that cycle through different temperatures. As the process of changing temperature takes some time, the process is longer than other processes.

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