print   Print full article The process for receiving COVID-19 test results differs between states and territories and between public and private laboratories.
 
If you are tested by a private laboratory you will be asked to provide a GP request form and your Medicare card at the time the swab is taken.  Your results will be sent to the doctor who requested the test.  They are responsible for providing your results.
 
If you are tested at a public health facility, a special COVID-19 or respiratory clinic you will be asked to provide contact details so that you can have your result made available to you. Some states provide a phone number so that you can chase up a late result.
 
NSW
 
If you are tested at a NSW Health public hospital, fever clinic, COVID clinic or emergency department and you have a negative result, it will be sent directly to you as an SMS.  If you have a positive result, you will receive a call from public health. Parents, guardians and carers of children will receive results by phone, regardless of whether they are positive or negative. Your local hospital health team will provide you with details on how to register. Results will typically be available 24 to 72 hours after testing. 
 
https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/covid-19/Pages/clinics.aspx
 
Victoria

Your doctor or the clinic where you were tested will notify you of your result, either by calling or by SMS, regardless of whether it is positive or negative.  Typically, it takes one to three days for people to get their result after they are tested. Sometimes there can be delays and it can take longer. If you were tested at a mobile drive-through clinic in a retail setting, and have been waiting for more than five days for your test result, you should call the 24-hour coronavirus hotline 1800 675 398.
 
https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/getting-tested-coronavirus-covid-19#what-happens-if-i-test-positive-or-negative
 
Queensland

If the test result is negative, you will be contacted by the doctor or the clinic where you were tested, either by a phone call or SMS. If you have been waiting for your result and it has been more than 36-48 hours since your test, you should contact Pathology Queensland on 1800 472 847 to confirm that you have a negative result. This service operates Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays), 8.15am to 5.15pm.  If you have tested positive for COVID-19, you will be contacted immediately for next steps.

https://www.health.qld.gov.au/healthsupport/businesses/pathology-queensland/patients/COVID19-results

https://www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19/stay-informed/testing-and-fever-clinics
 
South Australia

SA Pathology has launched a COVID-19 digital health service in partnership with a digital health company. This provides a portal to enable people to access their result. People who have had a recent COVID-19 test will receive an SMS invitation, via their nominated mobile phone number, to register with the portal. 

https://www.sapathology.sa.gov.au/wps/wcm/connect/sa+pathology+internet+content+new/content/news/pinned/covid-19+digital+health+service
  
Western Australia
 
At the time of testing, you will be asked to provide an Australian phone number so that if you return a negative test result you can be informed via SMS. It will take between 2 and 3 days to be notified of your results.  COVID clinics will contact the parents/guardians/carers of children under the age of 16 to provide negative test results. In the event of a positive result a Public Health Unit staff member will phone to discuss your result with you.
 
https://healthywa.wa.gov.au/~/media/Files/Corporate/general%20documents/Infectious%20diseases/PDF/Coronavirus/FAQ%20-%20COVID-19%20Clinics.pdf
 
ACT
 
If the test returns positive for COVID-19, you will usually receive the result within 1–2 days.  If negative, you will usually receive the result in 2–4 days. Depending on where you were tested, a negative result may be sent to you by SMS or a phone call from your doctor.  If you have not received your result within these timeframes, you need to contact the GP who ordered your test or the Respiratory Assessment Clinic that collected the swab. If you were tested at the Weston Creek Walk-in Centre or the EPIC drive-through testing clinic, you can contact (02) 5124 5574 from Monday to Friday, between 9am and 5pm.
If your test result is positive, the Communicable Disease Control (CDC) Section of ACT Health will contact you and give you advice about what you need to do.
 
https://www.covid19.act.gov.au/protecting-yourself-and-others/getting-tested#How-long-do-COVID-19-test-results-take-
 
Tasmania
 
You will be asked to provide contact details at the time of the test. You will be contacted directly with your result. If you have a positive result, you will receive a phone call from the Public Health Service. If your result is negative, you will either receive an SMS or be contacted via the details you provided at the time of testing.
 
https://www.coronavirus.tas.gov.au/keeping-yourself-safe/testing-for-covid19/im-being-tested.-what-should-i-know
 
Northern Territory
 
If your test is positive, the NT Centre for Disease Control will let you know the next steps for isolation and treatment. For general help, you can call 1800 020 080.
 
https://coronavirus.nt.gov.au/stay-safe/testing
 
 

Last Review Date: September 2, 2020