COVID-19 testing criteria—recent updates
Patients eligible for testing include:
Anyone who develops a fever or acute respiratory infection; AND
- Has arrived in Australia from overseas within 14 days of developing symptoms; or
- Has been in close contact with a person who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 within 14 days of developing symptoms; or
- Is a health worker working directly with patients; or
- Has severe community-acquired pneumonia with no clear cause.
In addition, testing should be done on those with fever or acute respiratory infection:
- Who are health workers or aged/residential care worker; or
- Live in a geographically isolated area with an elevated risk of transmission; or
- Live in aged and residential care, a rural and remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community; a detention or correctional facility, a boarding school or a military base; or
- Have been hospitalised with an unknown cause of symptoms.
Some states have expanded their testing criteria beyond the Australian Government criteria:
- NSW and the ACT are also testing those with symptoms who either have connections to COVID-19 outbreak settings or have been on a cruise ship within 14 days of developing symptoms;
- NSW is additionally testing those with symptoms who have been referred by their GP to be tested, or whose clinician expects they may have COVID-19 after taking a full history;
- Tasmania and South Australia are also testing interstate travellers who have developed fever or acute respiratory infection within 14 days of arriving;
- Victoria is also testing anyone with fever or acute respiratory infection who is also Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.
- Western Australia is also testing those with symptoms who have been on a cruise ship within 14 days of developing symptoms, and police officers with symptoms.