Respiratory virus PCR swabs




  • Used to diagnose respiratory viral illness including influenza (all types), parainfluenza, RSV, human metapneumovirus and adenovirus
  • Samples may be tested for the presence of Influenza A H1N1 2009 (Swine) if indicated
  • For late diagnosis of influenza serology samples may be appropriate
  • If the following are suspected please discuss with the Consultant Microbiologist and see the relevant PHE guidance

Sample requirements

Please check swab expiry date before use

Two separate viral swabs, a nose swab and a throat swab, should be taken

Place each swab into its transport tube

Viral transport swab

Required information

  • Relevant clinical details
  • Date of onset


Store at room temperature

Transport as soon as possible at ambient temperature

Turnaround time

Samples may be tested locally or sent to a Regional Reference Centre

Turnaround times will vary according to the seasonal workload. During winter months and outbreaks - up to 3 days.

Page last reviewed: 15/07/2014