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COVID tests in the UK are carried out through a number of different routes: 

  • PILLAR 1: swab testing in Public Health England (PHE) labs and NHS hospitals for those with a clinical need, and health and care workers 
  • PILLAR 2: swab testing for the wider population, as set out in government guidance 
  • PILLAR 3: serology testing to show if people have antibodies from having had COVID-19 
  • PILLAR 4: blood and swab testing for national surveillance supported by PHE, the Office for National Statistics (ONS), and research, academic, and scientific partners to learn more about the prevalence and spread of the virus and for other testing research purposes, such as the accuracy and ease of use of home testing.