Self-testing (sometimes called home-testing) involves collecting a small amount of your own blood and testing for HIV yourself. The result is then available within minutes.
You must make sure that your test is CE quality assured and is licensed for sale in the UK. If the test finds no sign of infection, your result is negative. If signs of infection are found, the result is reactive. See points to remember below.
Find out more, including how to get your hands on a self-test, frequently asked questions and more on our HIV testing pages.
Important points to remember about self-testing:
1. Blood tests are the most accurate tests. Other tests can be less accurate and may not give a reliable result for a longer period after exposure to the infection. This is known as the “window period”.
2. For all self-sampling, self-testing or home-testing methods, a further blood test should be carried out to confirm the result if the first test is reactive.
3. If the confirmation test is also positive, you’ll be referred to a specialist HIV clinic for some more tests and further care.