Get your Covid-19-shot this autumn and stay safe.

Covid-19 testing

When should you get tested?

  • If you are older than 6 years and have COVID-19-related symptoms. In that case, a test by a health professional (RAT or PCR) is no longer systematically recommended, but a self-test is still recommended (in combination with general measures such as wearing a mask). Below you will find more information.
  • For a child under 6 years of age, a test is only recommended if there are severe symptoms (hospitalization required) OR if symptoms are mild after a recent high-risk contact.
  • When you have been abroad. Read more or if you came into contact with someone who has the coronavirus. Below you will find more information

What to do if you are feeling ill (applicable from the age of 6 years)

Do you have any of the symptoms on the list? Stay home and do NOT call your GP, but complete the online questionnaire.

  • Cough
  • Respiratory problems
  • Fever
  • Aches and pains
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of sense of smell or taste
  • Diarrhoea

Which test to use if it turns out that you are best tested?

A PCR or RAT test remains only recommended

  • in case of close contact (such as in the family) with severely immunocompromised patients (for definition see Table page 2, WHO document);
  • for all healthcare providers

On this list you will find the pharmacists with whom you can have a RAT test taken. You will then get the result after about 15 minutes.

PCR tests are now only used in certain situations:

  • by the general practitioner, if this is considered appropriate
  • in asymptomatic people admitted to hospital wards with patients at risk (e.g. geriatrics, haematology, dialysis, oncology, intensive care, transplantation), and in the context of an outbreak investigation.

Systematic testing of new residents of, for example, nursing homes is no longer recommended.

For the other persons, a self-test is recommended, esspecially if you are in contact with people at risk for severe COVID-19. A self-test can be purchased at the pharmacist or in certain stores. A positive self-test no longer needs to be confirmed by a PCR or RAT test.

You should consult a physician:

  • If you run a higher risk of serious COVID-19 (eg pregnancy, diabetes, heart-renal, liver or lung diseases, cancer , etc.)
  • If your symptoms worsen or last longer than 5 days

Your doctor can then decide on the basis of your individual case whether a (second) test is appropriate, and if so, with which type of test.

While you wait for the results:

  • Stay at home if possible
  • If you cannot stay at home, always wear a mouth mask outdoors, such as on public transport
  • Keep your distance from your friends, relatives or colleagues, as long as you have complaints. This way you avoid infecting other people.

Is the test positive?

  • Isolate yourself.. Stay at home for at least 7 days from the onset of symptoms.
  • Follow the advice of your GP (if consulted).
  • Only leave your house after 7 days
    • If you have not had a fever for at least 3 days
    • If there’s a clinical improvement of your symptoms
  • Still wear a mouth mask outside the house for 3 days

Is the test negative? Even with a negative test, it is best to stay at home (and/or wear a mouth mask), as long as the symptoms last. After all, a negative result with a self-test does not necessarily exclude infection with the COVID-19 virus. In addition, the transmission of other respiratory viruses (such as the flu virus) is also best prevented.

When is a test needed if you are not feeling ill?

If you came into contact with someone who has the coronavirus:

If you return from abroad

Where can you get tested?

You can perform a self-test or get tested in the following places:

  • in certain pharmacies (RAT), see list
  • at your GP (PCR or RAT test)

What do you need to get tested?

To perform a RAT test at a pharmacy, it is necessary to have:

  • your national register number - identity card
  • a mobile phone number to receive the result
  • the name of the GP who will receive your result or the 16-digit activation code received after you have completed the online questionnaire(optional)

How do I make an appointment at a pharmacy?

It is preferable to always contact your pharmacy first to find out whether your pharmacy can test you and whether you should make an appointment or not. If your pharmacist has a website, see if it contains more guidelines regarding covid testing. Your pharmacist may not perform on-call testing or only test asymptomatic individuals who need an EU digital COVID certificate to travel

Where can I get my COVID-19 test result?

As soon as the result of your COVID-19 test is available, you will find it via the portal www.myhealth.belgium.be

  • Log into the portal, select “COVID-19” and click on “My COVID-19 Test Result” or one of the links below.
  • Providing a mobile phone number during the sampling allows you, in some cases, to receive the result immediately and very easily via a secure text message.
  • If you use the GovApp application and you have generated and entered the 17-digit code, you can receive your result via this application.
  • If you cannot access www.myhealth.belgium.be or do not have the GovApp application (no ID card, no PC/mobile phone or internet connection), please contact your GP.

If you do not have a regular GP, or if he/she is not available, please be advised that all doctors can consult the results of the tests, as long as:

  • the doctor has your national register number
  • the doctor has a therapeutic relationship with you
  • your informed consent has been given for the sharing your health data (on the portal www.myhealth.belgium.be > “Access Management”).

Will my test be reimbursed? At the current stage of the epidemic, the following PCR or RAT tests are reimbursed:

  • tests prescribed and/or performed by a physician
  • for the exceptions mentioned above (care providers and close contacts of immunocompromised persons);
  • for all other persons with symptoms who still want to have a test performed. This is only possible in the case of recent symptoms (< 5 days) via a RAT test in a pharmacy, or on the basis of a test code via the self-evaluation tool.

All other tests, including self-testing or testing of travelers departing abroad and all other screenings, are at the expense of the test taker or the initiating body and are therefore not reimbursed.

Self tests

More information on Covid-19 self-tests

More information about testing and quarantine can be found on the websites of the competent authorities: