Testing for the virus

Expand all questions

If you are COVID-19 positive or suspect that you have been infected, stay home if you have any kind of symptoms. Avoid contact with other people, follow hand and respiratory hygiene. If at all possible, have all essentials delivered to you at home contact free.

If you suspect that you have been infected with the coronavirus:

  • Contact your family doctor. The family doctor will evaluate the need for testing, give medical advice and will also start a certificate of incapacity for work or a certificate for care leave (the so-called certificate for sick leave). If you are unable to contact your family doctor, call the Family Doctor's Advice Line 1220 (634 66 30). The calls are answered by medical professionals 24/7, advice is given in Estonian and Russian (advice in English every day from 15.00 to 17.00).
  • If the family doctor decides that testing is necessary, you will be given a digital referral. Make sure that your family doctor has your correct phone number so that the testing centre could contact you.
  • Once the referral has been submitted, you can book a testing appointment for yourself. Adults get an SMS along with a link to the National Booking System to the phone number on the referral. In the online booking system of the testing centre you can identify yourself with an ID card or Mobile ID and book your own appointment (a parent is not able to book an appointment for their child through the National Booking System). If you do not wish to use the online registry system or the SMS does not reach you for some reason, wait for a call from the testing centre -- the testing centre is making calls in the order the referrals reached them. If the testing centre has not called within 48 hours, we ask that you turn to your family doctor to check that the referral exists and the phone number on the referral is correct. If the referral exists and the phone number on the referral is correct, call the testing call centre at 646 4848 (Monday to Friday 8-19, Saturday 10-16).
  • Go to testing on time and make sure to take an identity document with you -- you can give a nasopharyngeal sample only on the basis of a digital referral and an identification document. You should go to testing alone. Testing takes place on weekends and public holidays as well. More information about testing can be found on the web page of the Health Board.
  • After giving the sample, stay home and wait for the results. You will receive the results within two working days. If the result was positive, you will get a phone call and you can see the results yourself in the Patient Portal digilugu.ee.

Foreigners and people who do not have health insurance have to contact the nearest family health centre if they become symptomatic. If there is cause to suspect an upper respiratory virus (fever, dry cough, difficulties breathing), the patients are served regardless of whether they belong to the family doctor's list or not.

If you have COVID-19:

  • If your test result was positive, you have to remain in self-isolation at home. Follow the recommendations of the family doctor, you can also find advice on how to treat the coronavirus at home from the guidelines of the Health Board (in Estonian). If your health condition worsens suddenly, call 112.
  • Make sure to inform your close contacts. Close contacts must remain in self-isolation for 7 days if they have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 (or more than a year has passed since the completion of the course of vaccinations) or recovered from the disease within the past six months. More specific instructions on how to determine close contacts can be found on the web page of the Health Board.
  • The Health Board will contact you at first chance to determine the circumstances of your infection. See the questions that the official will ask you -- if possible, think them through even before the Health Board's call.
  • If you are using the HOIA app, mark your infection in the app as well.
  • As an infected person you have to stay in self-isolation for at least ten days. You have to remain in a 10-day isolation even if the symptoms disappear in a few days. This will help to prevent the disease from spreading.
  • Recovery is decided by a doctor -- generally you are declared healthy if you have not had a fever for at least 72 hours and acute symptoms of the virus have receded.

If the results of your corona test were positive but you have no symptoms:

  • Stay home. Avoid contacts with other people and follow hand and respiratory hygiene.
  • If no symptoms appear, the isolation is ended after 10 days have passed since the positive test. The day of taking the test is considered Day 0. Isolation is ended by a doctor.
  • If symptoms appear during isolation, the isolation restarts from when the symptoms appeared and the patient is a symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 positive.

Last updated: 10.01.2022 00:57

Did this response answer your question?

For adults, a negative test result is not sufficient as a COVID certificate in Estonia for participating in activities taking place in public indoor spaces. The access of unvaccinated people to checked events and activities is limited because their risk of getting infected is very high and if they are infected, they spread the virus more than people who have immune protection; they also have a higher risk of suffering from the disease more severely and ending up in a hospital.

Rapid tests that are valid for 48 hours:

  • antigen rapid tests that are used have been approved in the EU and meant for professional use
  • are done by a health care service provider, generally in their own medical centres (e.g. Confido's 17 locations across Estonia, Corrigo in Ida-Virumaa).
  • the test results are entered into the health information system
  • a person gets a certificate to prove a negative result
  • a person pays for the service herself
  • at general pharmacies it is also possible to do rapid antigen tests meant for self-testing, the results of which are issued on a certificate (only valid inside the country).

Only young people between the ages of 12 years and three months and 17 years (included) may participate in public events and activities with a negative test result.

If the test result is positive or unclear, the person must stay in isolation and contact their family doctor to confirm the diagnosis with a PCR test.

More information in the Health Board's instructions for administering rapid tests. (in Estonian).

Last updated: 15.11.2021 13:30

Did this response answer your question?

This definitely depends on the test, but they have considerably improved within a year. The rapid antigen tests usually indicate their sensitivity and specificity. The sensitivity shows how many people with antigens the test identifies on average. If the test has 97% sensitivity, it finds 32 of 33 sick persons but also identifies one sick person as a false healthy. Specificity shows how many people without antigens it can identify on average. If the specificity is 99%, the test finds one false infected among 100 persons without antigens.

Still, these indicators only apply if the level of virus in the organism is high. If there are few antigens (before symptoms occur or immediately after the disease), the tests might show the correct results.

Last updated: 08.04.2021 16:06

Did this response answer your question?

If you have any symptoms, stay at home, and call your family doctor or the family doctors' helpline at +372 6346 630 or 1220 (24/7).

When the family doctor has sent the referral to the testing system, a text message will be sent to the adult getting tested (aged 18 or above) on the number provided on the referral. This will allow for booking the time for testing via the online booking system. After the referral has arrived to the laboratory information system, the website gives you access to the website https://www.veebiregistratuur.ee, and you can book your time for testing. It is necessary to identify oneself with an ID card, Mobile ID or Smart ID upon making the booking.

All those who are using the online booking system or won't receive the text message for technical reasons will be called by the testing call centre in the order of the referrals received, within one day (calls will be made from Monday to Saturday). If the call centre has not contacted you within 48 hours, we recommend contacting the family doctor to check if the phone number included on the referral is correct, and if the referral has been forwarded. If the phone number on the referral is correct, please contact the testing call centre, their opening times are available on the website https://koroonatestimine.ee/en/customer-support/.

Take an ID document with you to the test and be on time

The locations of testing points can be found on https://koroonatestimine.ee/en/testing-sites/ , information about paid testing can be found on https://koroonatestimine.ee/en/for-patients/paid-testing/, more information about the test can also be found on the Health Board website https://www.terviseamet.ee/en/testing-virus, and by phone 1247.

Last updated: 31.05.2021 09:54

Did this response answer your question?

According to the current data, recovery from COVID-19 gives an immunity for at least six months.

It is still recommended that people who have recovered from COVID-19 receive one dose of the vaccine on the sixth month after recovery.

Vaccinating recovered people with two doses of the vaccine is generally not medically indicated (except for some immunodeficiency conditions). If there is unavoidable need (due to travel restrictions in certain countries etc.), it is possible to administer a person a second dose if he so wishes. The period between the two doses is the interval determined in the summary of the vaccine properties. The later the second dise is administered, the better and more permanent the immunity that can be achieved.

Last updated: 05.10.2021 14:38

Did this response answer your question?

It is possible to do the SARS-CoV-2 antigen-RTD test meant for self-testing at bigger pharmacies, in the presence and with the guidance of a pharmacy worker. If the test result is negative, you will be issued a certificate that confirms that the test was carried out at a pharmacy and its result was negative.

The certificate is meant for healthy persons who have not been vaccinated against the coronavirus or recovered from the disease within the past six months. People who can be suspected of suffering from acute COVID-19 (including symptomatic persons or close contacts) are not being tested.

The whole testing process takes about 20 minutes (buying the service, self-testing, and staying in the observation area for 15 minutes). It is a paid service. Please bring an identification document along to the testing and follow the requirements in force for commercial establishments. Prior booking might be necessary.

For instance, the possibility to self-test is offered by different service locations of Apotheka, Benu, Südameapteek (all links in Estonian).

A negative test result is not sufficient to participate in activities where the COVID certificate is required (e.g. entertainment, catering, sports establishments, different organised activities etc.), except for young people in the age bracket of 12 years and three months to 17 years (included).

Last updated: 15.11.2021 14:11

Did this response answer your question?

There are several service providers who offer paid testing (the list in not exhaustive):

Last updated: 29.10.2021 18:22

Did this response answer your question?

Persons who have tested positive will definitely receive a phone call. Testing and providing information on the test results takes time due to excessive workload, but usually the results come in within two days.

When the person tests negative, the test results will be entered to the digital Patient Portal digilugu.ee, because it is not possible to call every person who has been tested. You can access digilugu.ee website using your ID-card or Mobile-ID.

Last updated: 27.11.2020 11:08

Did this response answer your question?

People arriving on foot at the Port of Tallinn, terminals A and D, can take their test with a clinician from Confido, and people arriving at the Tallinn airport can approach the Qvalitas testing point with their letter of referral. The letter of referral will be provided at the airport. Issuing the letter of referral and taking the test will take about five minutes. Testing will take place on a first-come-first-serve basis at the port and airport. The testing sites are open until the last passenger by boat or plane has arrived.

Passengers arriving from a high-risk country at any other sea port or airport or by train or road transport, can get tested by booking a time with the SYNLAB and Medicum testing centres by calling 678 0000 (Monday-to-Friday 9 am to 5 pm). Priority in testing will be given to those with symptoms of the disease, therefore the waiting time will be one to two days. If you already know your time of arrival, it is recommended to book the test in advance. Testing is free for persons who have an Estonian personal identification code; foreigners can pay by card on the spot.

Additional information on testing can be found https://koroonatestimine.ee/.

Appointment for a free test (with an Estonian ID code) can be booked by calling 678 0000 (Monday-Friday 9am to 5pm). A test for a fee can be done with all service providers who offer this service.

Last updated: 10.01.2022 01:42

Did this response answer your question?

The newest info on testing sites can be found here.

Last updated: 25.08.2021 16:10

Did this response answer your question?

The self-isolation period of a close contact (7 calendar days) cannot be reduced with a test. However, you can avoid having to stay home by vaccinating against COVID-19, as self-isolation is not obligatory for asymptomatic close contacts who

  • have completed the course of COVID-19 vaccinations, achieved maximum protection after the last dose and no more than one year has passed since the last dose;
  • have completed the course of COVID-19 vaccinations, achieved maximum protection and received a complementary dose (the so-called additional or booster dose) after the course was completed, and no more than one year has passed since receiving the complementary dose;
  • have been equated to vaccinated persons, i.e. received one dose of the vaccine after recovery from COVID-19, achieved maximum protection after the vaccine dose and no more than one year has passed since the last dose of the vaccine, or have become infected with COVID-19 after receiving the first dose of the vaccine, have recovered from COVID-19 and no more than one year has passed since doing the SARS-CoV-2 test that confirmed the diagnosis or the date that the diagnosis was confirmed;
  • have recovered from COVID-19 no more than 180 days ago.

However, it is recommended that people who have been vaccinated or recovered from the disease stay home for at least seven days if a person living with them has been infected. The new variants of the coronavirus spread quickly and people who have been vaccinated or have had the disease earlier can also get infected. A close contact within a family further increases the risk of infection and transmission of the infection.

Last updated: 10.01.2022 13:38

Did this response answer your question?

Due to the increase in testing volumes, the waiting time is now a bit longer. If you provided your phone number when the referral was issued, you will be contacted.

When the letter of referral from the family doctor arrives, you can also register yourself to be tested for coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. A short message will be sent to the telephone number provided to the public testing system after receipt of the letter of referral which will allow you to use the e-registration via the enclosed link.

Last updated: 14.08.2021 23:19

Did this response answer your question?

If symptoms occur during the 7-day self-isolation or health monitoring period, it is necessary to turn to the family doctor who will issue a referral to testing.

Students who have been close contacts can do a rapid antigen test in the morning of the fifth day from the close contact in order to shorten the quarantine. If the test result is negative, the child is allowed to only go to school and participate in informal education and youth work on the same day and the two following days (the so-called simplified quarantine).

Last updated: 24.01.2022 12:58

Did this response answer your question?

If testing in a foreign country is for a fee, then this fee will not be refunded when the person arrives in Estonia. No changes have been made in Estonia regarding the payment for testing. You can get tested at the port and the airport immediately upon arrival, and the test will be free with the Estonian ID-code.

Last updated: 15.01.2021 17:36

Did this response answer your question?

Foreign nationals will have to pay a fee to take the test, the coronavirus test at the port and the airport will cost EUR 52, in other places the prices will be indicated by the service provider. Testing can be carried out by the following service providers:

Last updated: 08.02.2021 09:49

Did this response answer your question?

Throat rinse samples can be given by children under the age of 18 at public testing sites and at the SYNLAB site for paid testing. Upon coming to take a test, the child gets to choose whether he wants to do the regular nasopharyngeal test or a throat rinse test. The throat rinse test cannot be done at the border crossing points as the procedure takes longer and this would lengthen the waiting times of everybody who is doing the test.

It is recommended that in order to prepare the children, they should try out gargling with tap water at home with their parents before coming for testing. This way the children know what will be waiting for them in advance.

In order for the throat rinse sample to be gathered correctly, it can be given only at a testing location, instructed by a medical professional. To give a sample, the patient receives 10 millilitres of saline solution (sodium chloride) that he needs to gargle in his throat (it is important to distinguish this from a regular mouth wash). The medical professional pulls some of the throat rinse liquid from the cup into a special test-tube, marks it with the patient's information and sends it to a laboratory to be analysed with the same, PCR method. The results of the analysis come to the digilugu.ee portal within 24 to 48 hours, just like with the nasopharyngeal test. It is possible to issue the certificate necessary for travelling based on the throat rinse test as well.

An appointment is done in the same way, whether it is for a nasopharyngeal or a throat rinse test. In order to get a referral, you must turn to your family doctor or call the family doctor advice line 1220. To do a paid test, you need to book an appointment by calling the paid testing site of SYNLAB at 17123 or by writing to klienditugi@synlab.ee.

Last updated: 12.08.2021 16:55

Did this response answer your question?

More information about the coronavirus and restrictions related to it is available calling 1247 (from abroad +372 600 1247).