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When you shall take a coronavirus test - advice for positive and negative test results - archive

Both self-testing with rapid antigen tests at home or testing at a test centre can be used. 

Both self-testing with rapid antigen tests at home or testing at a test centre can be used. 

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The information on this page is now archived. Current advice can be found here:



If you use a self-test that has not been issued by the public sector, it is recommended to use a test that is CE-IVD-marked that can be bought at a pharmacy. For all self-tests, the reliability of results depends on the test being taken correctly, and that the instructions for use are followed carefully when the sample is analysed and read. It is important to note that the test must not used after the expiry date and that the temperature indication during storage and use is followed.

The tests do not tolerate frost, and must be at room temperature before they are used.

Children of lower secondary school age and below (1st-10th grade) are only recommended to be tested if they have symptoms, even if there is an infection in the child's household.

If you have had COVID-19 disease in the last 3 months and have developed new symptoms, it is recommended that you test yourself with a self-test. A PCR test can give a positive test result for a long time after being ill, because the PCR test detects viral fragments. Having these fragments does not mean you are contagious and you do not need to go back into isolation.

Seek medical attention if you are concerned about your child, or if you need medical help, regardless of whether there is a positive or negative test result.

If you have a positive COVID-19 test result

  • You must be in isolation, regardless of testing method.
  • You should inform your close contacts as soon as possible.
  • Those you live with and others equivalently close such as your romantic partner, best friend or overnight visitors are recommended to test themselves daily for 5 days after the last close contact. If you cannot keep a distance when you are in isolation, they should be tested daily, up to and including 5 days after your isolation period ends - 9 days in total.
  • Your other close contacts are recommended to be tested if they develop symptoms.
  • If you need assistance, you can contact the municipality's contact tracing team.
  • If you have taken a positive self-test at home, you should register this in your municipality's contact tracing system. Please note that a positive self-test is not registered by helsenorge.no so will not be visible on a COVID-19 certificate.
  • A positive self-test should be confirmed with a test at a test centre if you are not fully vaccinated, i.e. that you have not had a booster dose. If you have had a booster dose, or have had your primary vaccination series followed by having COVID-19 within the last 3 months, a confirmatory test is not necessary.
  • Seek medical attention if you are concerned about your health.

Your close contacts are people that you know you have been closer to than two metres for more than 15 minutes, or have had direct physical contact with in the period from 48 hours before you developed symptoms and until you isolated yourself. If you have no symptoms, the time is calculated from when the test was taken and until you isolated yourself.

For more information, see When you are a close contact

  • If you have installed the Smittestopp app, we encourage you to notify the app that you are infected, if this has been confirmed by a test at a municipality test centre.

If you have a negative COVID-19 test result

  • Stay at home until you feel better, the symptoms are in decline and you have been fever-free for 24 hours. Mild residual symptoms such as a runny nose, mucus, hoarseness and some coughing are fine.
  • With vague symptoms, you can go to school/work on the same day, but if you feel worse/ have more obvious symptoms, you should go home and take another test. 
  • Most people will test positive around the onset of symptoms. In some cases, it may take a little longer from the time you get symptoms until the self-test shows that you are infected. If you have new symptoms and a negative self-test, it is recommended that you take a new test 2-3 days later. If the symptoms are mild, you do not need to stay home in the time between the first and second test. If you are a household member or equivalently close to an infected person, and you have symptoms, you should stay at home between the first and second self-test.
  • Employees in the health and care services should follow the advice here: Bruk av personlig beskyttelsesutstyr ved normal hverdag med økt beredskap
  • In case of more severe or persistent symptoms, consult a doctor.


12.02.2022: Archived.

02.02.2022: Updated after regulation changes 01.02.2022 about follow-up of close contacts

26.01.2022: Updated in accordance with regulatory changes 26.01.22; daily testing regime may replace infection quarantine for close contacts

24.01.2022: Update following changed advice from 24.01.22 on who is recommended confirmatory PCR after positive rapid antigen test, and information on self-registration of positive self-tests.

19.01.2022: Clarification of advice for a positive test.

14.01.2022: Changes made in accordance to the regulatory changes 14.01.22 (no longer quarantine obligation for other close contacts, and changes to test recommendations).

21.12.2021: New article created - text taken from What should you do if you have newly arisen symptoms