Please be aware before using our testing services

Frequently asked questions

Because of the variety of destinations our customers are travelling to, and because of the varied rules and restrictions in place in each destination, we are unable to advise on which test you should take or when you should take it. If you have queries, please bring these to a healthcare-professional led appointment and speak to your clinician.

As we are providing COVID testing services to patients travelling to 50+ destinations we are not able to advise about when travellers should take a test as each country's testing requirements differ substantially and are constantly changing. We recommend reviewing the Government website for your destination to understand their specific requirements. We do encourage travellers to book as early as they can within their travel window.

Our service uses a RT-PCR method to detect the RNA (ribonucleic acid) contained within the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Please check the instructions provided in your test kit for return guidance.

  • Same Day test kits: These can be returned to our clinic in Oxford (before 11AM), the drop box at Salient Bio Labs (before 12PM), or one of the national same day drop boxes (please check the cut off times).
  • Next Day test kits: These can be returned to our clinic in Oxford (before 5PM), the drop box at Salient Bio Labs (before 12PM), or one of the national next day drop boxes (please check the cut off times).
  • Day 2 and Day 8 tests: These can be returned either via Royal Mail using the prepaid returns envelop, or by returning the tests to our Oxford Clinic before 5PM.

The results timeline for our standard tests are provided on this page, for the expedited service on this page. For Hong Kong ISO15189 testing, please allow an additional 12-24 hours and request ISO15189 testing. All timelines are indicative timelines. Due to the changing nature of the pandemic, it is not possible to guarantee lab turnaround times. We cannot be held liable for costs incurred due to delayed results. You will be asked to sign a waiver prior to your test accepting this.

Results are typically sent by email (ISO15189 results come or via SMS with a link to download a formal result). We can only send to one email or phone number.

There are 3 outcomes of your test:

  • Positive - You are infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Please immediately follow PHE England guidance to isolate along with your household
  • Negative - You are not infected with the virus. Please continue to take sensible precautions, if you were self-isolating as an international arrival you may stop self-isolating.
  • Invalid - Occurs in 1-3% of samples. Typically (but not exclusively) this arises when insufficient human material is present on the swab sample, and is more frequent with home test kit samples. It can be mitigated by using our practitioner-led testing service. You must continue to isolate as an international arrival

There are 4 outcomes of your test:

  • Positive - You are infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Please immediately follow PHE England guidance to isolate along with your household
  • Negative - You are not infected with the virus. Please continue to take sensible precautions
  • Inconclusive - Typically a borderline positive/negative result. You require retesting
  • Invalid - Occurs in 1-3% of samples. Typically (but not exclusively) this arises when insufficient human material is present on the swab sample, and is more frequent with home test kit samples. It can be mitigated by using our GP led testing service.

All outcomes are subject to laboratory fees and are non-refundable.

1-3% of PCR sample results will return invalid or inconclusive. This is often (but not exclusively) the result of sample collection. For self-test kits, you will need to order another test. For in-clinic tests, we will arrange for you to be re-tested free of charge. Please contact us via email.

There are 3 scenarios we commonly see that lead to 'missing' results:

  • The barcode has not been registered on the laboratory website - if your barcode begins with an M or an R, then register here (https://randoxhealth.com/register-kit) if it begins with a number register here (http://portal.salient.bio/). This is the most common issue we see.
  • The results have been filtered into your junk
  • There was a typo made when registering your email on the laboratory website

You can also contact the labs directly either via covid19@randoxhealth.com (barcodes beginning with M or R), or results@salient.bio (barcodes beginning with numbers).

We use a number of labs, all of whom are UKAS registered or UKAS accredited. If you require a UKAS accredited lab, you will need to book an appointment with one of our healthcare professionals and request this at the time of the appointment.

For GP-led testing, please attend the clinic with your photo ID so this can be added to your GP certificate.

The kits have a 6 month shelf life. You can buy in advance.

Home test kits are considered personalised items and are non-refundable once purchased.

Yes the lab is open over the weekend and will continue to analyse samples. We are typically closed.

During the booking process, you can select whether you would like your test kits posted or if you would like to collect them from Mayfield Clinic Oxford

  • Collect: Your test kit can be collected from our clinic during our normal office hours (Weekdays 9:30 - 17:30; Weekends 9:30 - 12:30).
  • Post: Your test kit will be processed and sent out the next working day (excluding weekends) using Royal Mail Tracked 24 service, we expect that your test kit to be with you within 48 hours.

Alternatively, you can enquiry about our courier service and we can bring you your test.

We use a number of labs, all of whom are UKAS registered or UKAS accredited to ISO 17025. If you require a UKAS accredited lab, you will need to book an appointment with one of our healthcare professionals and request this at the time of the appointment. Mayfield Clinic is accredited to ISO17025 for the provision of private COVID testing services. Some international countries require an ISO15189 accreditation. We can provide this service in Oxford; please book an ISO15189 appointment via our COVID testing page.

Your booking reference number is the number you are required to enter on your passenger locator form before travelling to the UK. It is displayed on your PDF receipt sent at the time of booking. The reference number is MAYFI, followed by the number 0 and your 6 digit invoice number.

You can collect your sample anytime from Day 5 onwards, where Day 0 is the day you returned back to the UK.

You can collect your sample anytime on or before Day 2, where Day 0 is the day you returned back to the UK.

You should collect your Day 8 sample on Day 8, where Day 0 is the day you returned back to the UK.

If you test positive for either a Day 2 or a Day 8 test, you must quarantine for a further 10 days from the day you took the test – you will receive further advice alongside your test results. Positive Day 2 tests are sent for genomic sequencing to check the strain of the virus the patient is carrying. If your test shows that you have a variant of coronavirus known as a ‘variant of concern’, you will get a further call and your close contacts will be asked to be tested.

Yes, the scheme rules state that you can attend the clinic to collect a test or have a sample collected. You are also allowed to exit your isolation address to post a sample.

No, if you have had 2 doses of a UK-approved vaccine, you only require a Day 2 test. Unvaccinated travellers will need a Day 2 and Day 8 test, with the option to end quarantine early by completing a Day 5 Test to Release PCR (quarantine can be exited upon receipt of a negative Day 5 Test to Release result).

You can drop off your tests at our clinic in Oxford at the mail box found to the right of the entrance door on the wall. You can find our address on the website page.

No, private clinics are not allowed to give vaccination proof. The only way you can show your vaccination status is through your NHS COVID pass.

You will be sent a video link with a request to join your video call 5 minutes before your appointment time. The link is powered by WhereBy and does not require extra applications as it will open through your browser.

Antibody tests require a blood sample. This can be collected by finger prick for selected tests, or via venous draw if you visit our doctors in-clinic.

For our in-clinic service, we ask that patients be aged 12 or over, and be comfortable with having blood taken. For finger prick kits there is no age limit, however, drawing blood from children is challenging and we do not recommend attempting to collect a sample from a child under the age of 12 (please note, kits are non-refundable in the event you are unable to draw blood).

Test kits are medical or healthcare items. They are unique to the individual and are not refundable. The tests can be used for up to a period of 6 months; therefore, you can keep your tests for future use in the event of cancelled travel.

No, each traveller should have a unique booking reference number. Please contact us and we will reissue.

There is a weight of evidence to show that clinician-led samples obtain a better sample of relevant genetic material for testing. However, the testing process is the same for all tests.

Your Day 2 and Day 8 tests are interchangeable, but please check with a member of our customer care team if you are unsure by sending your test barcode or unique reference number to info@mayfieldclinic.co.uk.

© Mayfield Clinic Oxford 2022

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