Coronavirus (COVID-19) lateral flow tests are available for Merton residents, key workers, carers and volunteers. You'll normally get a result within 30 minutes.
These tests are for people who
don't have coronavirus symptoms.
You must book an appointment before arriving for a test.
Book an appointment
Please read all of the guidance on this page before booking a test.
Book a lateral flow test
You can book up to three days ahead, if slots are available.
Only days with available booking slots are shown on the booking form. If there are no booking slots available, please try again later in the day or tomorrow.
You will receive a confirmation email with details of your booking and information about what to bring.
You can book online on someone else's behalf if they can't do so themselves. People who are unable to book online, and don't know someone who can book for them, can call us on 020 8274 5210 from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm for help.
Cancel your appointment
If you can no longer attend your appointment, please click the cancellation link in your booking confirmation email so that the slot can be made available for someone else.
If you have symptoms or are self-isolating
Do not book or attend a lateral flow test if you are showing coronavirus symptoms or are self-isolating.
The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- high temperature
- new, continuous cough
- loss of, or change to, your sense of taste or smell
If you have any of these symptoms,
book a PCR test via GOV.UK and stay at home.
Clinically extremely vulnerable people
People who are clinically extremely vulnerable are strongly advised not to attend a lateral flow testing site, because the risk of exposure to the virus is significantly higher at this time.
Who can get tested and where
You must be at least 18 years old.
You must be in one of the following groups.
|Merton residents||Morden Assembly Hall, Tudor Drive SM4 4PJ|
|Key workers, including but not limited to the workers of Merton Council, the NHS family, the school and education community, Metropolitan Police Service, London Ambulance Service and the London Fire Brigade||Community pharmacies|
|Voluntary and community sector staff and volunteers who provide direct care to others within Merton||Community pharmacies|
|Carers, either formal or informal, who have caring responsibilities in Merton||Community pharmacies|
You must book an appointment before arriving for a test. All tests are booked the same way: see
Booking an Appointment above.
About the test
It is estimated that one in three people with coronavirus never shows any symptoms. Lateral flow testing is important to help identify people who are infectious without knowing it, so they can self-isolate and help to stop the spread of the virus. It will also help give us a more accurate picture of the number of cases in Merton.
This type of test is very good at identifying people who are infectious at the time of the test. The test can't tell whether you have had the virus in the past, or if you have recently been exposed to the virus but are not yet infectious.
You will have to swab your nose and throat under the supervision of testing staff. The swab will then be inserted into a tube of liquid for a short time. Drops of liquid will be added to a test strip (lateral flow device) and after about half an hour a result will be shown.
Attending your appointment
Please arrive on time.
Please book in advance, as we cannot take walk-in appointments for safety reasons.
Do not attend your appointment if you have any coronavirus symptoms.
You should bring:
- your booking reference number (this is on your confirmation email)
- a face covering
- a smartphone, if you have one
- water, if desired, as we cannot provide this at the test site
- tissues, as you will be asked to blow your nose before self-swabbing
What will happen
- On arrival, you will be asked to give your name and your reference number.
- A member of staff will help you to register via the NHS website. This normally takes 5-10 minutes. You will have to re-enter some information that you provided when you booked.
- You will be directed to a sample collection booth and given a sealed sterile swab.
- Before you start your swab, a test assistant will explain the process to you.
- You will swab the back of your throat and one nostril. This may be uncomfortable but not painful.
- Your test will then be processed.
- After you've taken your test:
- if you're at a
community pharmacy you can either wait for a test assistant to tell you your result, or leave and receive your results by email or text message.
- if you're at
Morden Assembly Hall, you will leave and receive your results by email or text message.
You will normally receive your results within 30 minutes, but it might take longer at busy times.
Your results will be sent to you by text message or email, using the contact details you provided when you registered with NHS Test and Trace.
If you receive a negative test result you do not need to self-isolate, unless you are symptomatic or otherwise indicated by the
Stay at Home Guidance available on GOV.UK.
Please remember that although the lateral flow test will pick up most infections, a negative result does not completely rule out COVID-19. Even if you receive a negative test, you must still follow the national lockdown guidance, stay at home as much as possible and follow relevant guidance, e.g. Hands, Face and Space.
If you receive a positive test result you must
self-isolate immediately and follow the guidance from NHS Test and Trace.
You will be told to book a confirmatory PCR test to make sure the lateral flow test is accurate. This can be done by ordering a home testing kit, or by
booking a slot via GOV.UK. You
should not attend the site that you went to for your lateral flow test, as you will need to access a different type of test.
In some situations, your result may come back as invalid. If your test indicates an invalid result you will need to rebook and be retested at the lateral flow test site.
If the result is invalid a second time, you may need to be tested using a PCR test. A PCR test can be accessed by ordering a home testing kit, or by
booking a slot via GOV.UK.
Use of your data
All information you give us is confidential. Please read the
Lateral Flow Test Registration Privacy Notice which tells you how Merton Council handles your information.