Major changes to PCR Testing for under 40’s


PCR tests won’t now be ordered for people over three or under forty until an antigen test kit turns positive for Covid-19.


The major change to testing arrangements follows a new all-time daily record infection rate of 20,554 was confirmed last night.


Healthcare workers and the medically vulnerable will still be sent for PCR testing thought.


The self-isolation period has also been cut from ten days to seven for those with a booster vaccine or a recent breakthrough infection.


Donegal GP, Dr Denis McCauley, chair of the Irish Medical Organisations GP committee, says it will allow faster diagnosis for those at the most risk.



From Monday, any person aged between four and 39 who has no underlying health conditions and has Covid-19 symptoms will not be advised to automatically seek a PCR test. Instead, they are being asked to self-isolate immediately and undertake regular antigen tests. They will be asked to contact the HSE and they will be sent out a kit of antigen tests by post. If they test positive for Covid-19 on any of these tests, they must only then seek a confirmatory PCR test. This is the first time that antigen tests are being advised for those who are showing symptoms of the disease.



Anyone aged 40 and over who is displaying symptoms is still being asked to seek a PCR test as soon as they start showing symptoms. Parents of children aged up to three are also asked to seek a PCR test for their children if their children start showing symptoms.