Getting tested for COVID-19

If you are feeling unwell and think you have symptoms of COVID-19 you must get tested and isolate as required.

Updated 9 March 2022

Check the Coronavirus website for up to date information and current advice on how and when to get tested as advice may change as our COVID-19 situation in Victoria evolves.

For information on where to get tested see the Coronavirus website where you can find a testing site near you.


General advice includes:

Seek medical advice

Seek medical advice and get tested even if your symptoms are mild. Symptoms include:

  • fever, sweats or chills,
  • sore throat,
  • runny nose
  • shortness of breath and/or
  • loss of sense of smell or taste
  • headache, muscle soreness, stuffy nose, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea can also occur.

Complete a Rapid Antigen Test

If you have any symptoms that could be COVID-19, even if they’re mild, you should take a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT). RATs are available to purchase at supermarkets, pharmacies and various convenience stores. You can also receive free RATs at state-run RAT distribution centres. More information on RATs here. If you test positive on a RAT, you must report your result to the Department of Health here.  You will need to isolate for a minimum of 7 days.

More information on reporting your COVID-19 RAT result and isolation requirements can be found on the Coronavirus website.

What does your RAT result mean?

Result What it means What to do
It is unlikely you have COVID-19, especially if you have no symptoms.

If you have symptoms, get a standard COVID-19 PCR test to be sure.

You do not need to get a PCR test if you have no symptoms

It is likely you have COVID-19

Stay home and isolate for a minimum of 7 days. Your household contacts also need to isolate for a minimum 7 days.

Report your positive test result here.

Inform people you have been in contact with 48 hours before your symptoms started (or if no symptoms, 48 hours before  you had a positive test).

Stay away from other people, including members of your household where possible.

More information here.

The test has not worked. You need to repeat the test.

Repeat the test.

If the result is ‘invalid’ again, get a standard COVID-19 PCR test.

If the result is positive, follow the instructions per positive results above.

If the result is negative, follow the instructions per negative results above.

Download the Community Unity Immunity factsheet about Rapid antigen self-tests for COVID-19 – Quick guide here.

Get a Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test

If you cannot get a RAT, you can get a PCR test at your local Aboriginal health service, GP or State-run testing site. After getting tested, you must go home immediately and self-isolate at home until you receive a negative result.

You can call your local Aboriginal health service or the COVID-19 hotline 1800 675 398 to find out where your nearest testing site is located. A list of testing sites and Rapid Antigen Test distribution centres can also be found here.


If you are very sick or your symptoms persist or get worse, please ensure you seek medical attention immediately by contacting your doctor, going to your nearest hospital emergency department or call 000.


COVID Infoline

Call 1800 312 911

Do you have questions about COVID-19?

Talk directly to Aboriginal staff who understand our local community and can answer your questions and direct you to support needed. Ring up and have a yarn.

Open from 9am – 5pm, 7 days a week.