Coronavirus (COVID-19) PCR

Diagnostic Use

Coronaviruses are important human and animal pathogens. At the end of 2019, a novel coronavirus was identified as the cause of a cluster of pneumonia cases in Hubei Province, Wuhan, China. Its rapid spread, resulted in an epidemic throughout China, followed by a global pandemic. In February 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) designated the disease COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019). The virus that causes COVID-19 is SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2); previously referred to as 2019-nCoV.

Common symptoms of COVID-19 are like those found with illnesses such as a cold or influenza.

* new or worsening cough

* sneezing and runny nose

* fever

* temporary loss of smell or altered sense of taste

* sore throat

* shortness of breath

* fatigue/feeling of tiredness

Less common symptoms of COVID-19 may include diarrhoea, headache, muscle aches, nausea, vomiting, malaise, chest pain, abdominal pain, joint pain or confusion/irritability. These almost always occur with one or more of the common symptoms.

Symptoms tend to arise around two to five days after a person has been infected but can take up to 14 days to show. The virus can be passed onto others before they know they have it – from up to two days before symptoms develop.

Viruses constantly change through mutation, and new variants of a virus are expected to occur over time. Sometimes new variants emerge and disappear. Other times, new variants emerge and persist so testing strategy evolves also. For the most up to date information, please refer to the COVID-19 Information Portal on Te Whatu Ora PRISM site.


Microbiology - Virology

Delphic Registration Code



Novel coronavirus
2019 nCov

Turnaround Time

24 hours

Test Code