Test and Protect

Help stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19)

Test and Protect is Scotland's approach to preventing the spread of coronavirus in the community.


Test and Protect is Scotland’s way of putting into practice the test, trace, isolate, support strategy.

It will prevent the spread of coronavirus in the community by:

  • identifying cases of coronavirus through testing
  • tracing the people who may have become infected by spending time in close contact with them
  • supporting those close contacts who are required to self-isolate, so that if they have the virus they are less likely transmit it to others

Breaking the chains of transmission in the community will stop the virus spreading. This will allow us to gradually change the restrictions that help to suppress the virus.


Testing is available to people with and without symptoms. It can be carried out at home, or at one of the many coronavirus testing centres across Scotland.

You can get a test for:

  • yourself
  • someone you care for
  • a child in your care


Contact tracing is a process for identifying people who are at risk of coronavirus infection because they‘ve had enough contact with a person who has tested positive. These people will be advised to book a test and self-isolate to help reduce the risk of spreading the virus.

Contact tracing isn't new – it’s been used for many years worldwide for a range of infectious diseases.

Contact tracing is part of the national Test and Protect approach to tackling the harm caused by the virus.

More about contact tracing in Scotland


It’s very important that you stay at home if you have symptoms that may be caused by coronavirus or you test positive for coronavirus. Self-isolation will help to control the spread of the virus to friends, the wider community and the most vulnerable.

Read our guidance for individuals with possible coronavirus infection

Check-in Scotland

You can log your contact details with any business or venue that displays the Check In Scotland Test and Protect QR code poster. When you visit, scan the poster with your mobile phone camera or, if you have one, a QR code scanning app. This will help the NHS contact trace you if someone from the venue later tests positive for coronavirus.

If you’re the owner or manager of a venue, you can find out more about the QR code and creating one for your venue.

Find out more about using the Check In Scotland QR code


Many people will be able to self-isolate with the help of nearby family, friends or neighbours.

If you need support but cannot get this from friends or family, phone the National Assistance Helpline (0800 111 4000) or textphone (0800 111 4114). The helpline is open from 9.00am to 5.00pm, Monday to Friday.

More ways to get support for you or someone you know through Ready Scotland.

If you are told to self-isolate by Test and Protect you may be eligible for a £500 Self-Isolation Support Grant.

Protect Scotland app

The free NHS Scotland Protect Scotland app has been designed to help us protect each other and reduce the spread of coronavirus.

By using the app and following current public health measures we can all stay safe when we meet up, socialise, work or travel.

Find out more about the Protect Scotland app or download it through the App Store and Google Play.

Further information

You can find out more about Test and Protect through the Scottish Government.