Test and Protect

Test and Protect, Scotland’s approach to implementing the 'test, trace, isolate, support' strategy, is a public health measure designed to break chains of transmission of COVID-19 in the community.

The Scottish Government has published a guide to Test and Protect.

As part of this, you will be asked to self-isolate at home for 10 days if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or you have tested positive for it. If you live with someone who has symptoms or has tested positive, or if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, you will be asked to self-isolate at home for 10 days.

How to get tested

Testing for coronavirus is available to anyone who is showing symptoms – a high temperature, new, continuous cough or loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste.

The drive-through Coronavirus Tayside regional testing facility is at Dudhope Castle, Dundee. Access to the site at Dudhope Castle is via Barrack Road in the city centre and the testing site is in the staff car park within the grounds of the castle on the west side. The public car park will be unaffected and will remain operational. The facility is open from 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week.

Anyone with Coronavirus symptoms, however mild, can get a free swab test that takes less than a minute. Tests should be booked or ordered as soon as symptoms begin www.nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 0300 303 2713.

The facility will provide self-administered tests for the community and anyone who gets a test at the site can expect to receive their results the next day.

In addition, a walk-through Coronavirus testing centre is now open in the centre of Dundee

The facility is within the Park Place car park on the University of Dundee campus and is operated by Mitie on behalf of the UK Government.

The site operates seven days a week, from 8am to 8pm, and is only for those who don’t have access to a car.

Those who can drive to get tested should continue to use the existing test centre at Dudhope Castle Car Park.

Tests must be booked in advance at www.nhsinform.scot/test-and-protect or by calling 0800 028 2816.

People should only book at test if they have coronavirus symptoms (a high temperature, a new and continuous cough, or a loss or change to their sense of smell or taste).

The Dundee site is the first self-cleaning facility in Scotland. This involves decontaminating each testing cubicle with dry mist between each use - helping to speed up the cleaning process and increase the testing capacity.

View the Frequently Asked Questions

In addition to this, mobile testing units will focus service provision in Angus and Perth & Kinross.

Dates and locations:

Myre Car Park
Forfar DD8 1AZ
Mobile Testing Centre
Drive through and walking
Recommended to pre-book on website
but will take ad-hoc
7 days a week

1-7 Mar

Broxden Park & Ride

Perth PH2 0PX

Mobile Testing Centre
Drive through and walking
Recommended to pre-book on website
but will take ad-hoc
7 days a week

8-14 Mar

Thimblerow Car Park
Mobile Testing Centre
Walking, cycling and drive through
Recommended to pre-book on website
but will take ad-hoc


From 17 Nov onwards

If you develop symptoms, you should self-isolate at home straight away along with other members of your household.

Beware of fake callers claiming a payment is needed for a test. Covid tests are free and will always be free for people that need them. Contact tracers will always call from the same number: 0800 030 8012, and give the option of calling back that number to verify the service.

Further testing expansion to find asymptomatic cases

From Thursday 18 February, anyone who is identified as a close contact of somebody who has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) will be asked to get tested.

The measure is designed to find asymptomatic cases that would otherwise go undetected, as close contacts are at higher risk than the wider population, given their exposure to somebody with COVID-19.

Previously, outbreak Incident Management Teams (IMTs) have had the ability to order testing of close contacts on a case-by-case basis, in line with local assessment of clinical risk.

Now everyone who has been identified as a close contact via the Protect Scotland app, or through manual contact tracing, will be provided with instructions on how to book a PCR test.

The approach does not replace self-isolation in any way, and close contacts who test negative will still have to complete 10 days of self-isolation, as the virus’ incubation period means the risk of developing COVID-19 is only significantly reduced 10 days after exposure.

This means anyone leaving self-isolation early could still inadvertently infect others if they become positive at a later date. Read the full article.

How to self isolate

Self-isolation means you should remain at home and should not go to work, school, public areas or use public transport. You should not go out to buy food or other essentials.  You must stay at home.

While you are self-isolating, you should: 

  • stay at least 2 metres (6 feet, or 3 steps) away from other people in your home
  • stay in a different room from other people in your home, ensuring it is well-ventilated
  • sleep alone in a separate bed
  • spend as little time as possible in shared areas (sitting room, kitchen, bathroom)
  • avoid using your kitchen while others are present
  • use a separate towel to dry your hands after you wash them; and
  • clean your kitchen, bathroom and other surfaces throughout the house every day

Downloadable COVID-19 isolation advice for households

Self-isolation information in community languages

You should always:

  • wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds regularly, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser if your hands aren’t visibly dirty
  • catch your coughs or sneezes in a disposable tissue and put it in the bin, or catch them in the crook of your elbow; and
  • avoid touching your face, and especially your mouth, nose or eyes

It will be helpful to think about who you could ask for help to make sure you can stay at home and self-isolate successfully, such as your family, friends or neighbours who could collect food or medicines for you.  You can also often arrange to have repeat prescriptions delivered, and retailers can offer deliveries of food and other essentials.

Those who are self-isolating and cannot otherwise get the help they need should call 0800 111 4000.

Protect Scotland app

The Protect Scotland app from NHS Scotland’s Test and Protect is a free, mobile phone app designed to help us protect each other, reduce the spread of Coronavirus and avoid further lockdowns.

The app will alert you if you have been in close contact with another app user who tests positive for Coronavirus. And if you test positive, it can help in determining contacts that you may have otherwise missed while keeping your information private and anonymous.

Using the Protect Scotland app, along with sticking to current public health measures, will help us to stay safe when we meet up, socialise, work or travel.

Find out more and download the app at the Protect Scotland website.