3. Getting tested

Generally speaking, COVID testing is no longer relevant, even when symptoms are present.

For whom

A COVID test is still necessary, however, for people regarded as vulnerable who:

  • have symptoms compatible with COVID-19 AND
  • for whom a positive test would have implications for their treatment

Today, it is the doctor who assesses the situation with the patient and prescribes a PCR test for COVID if its result will be used as the basis for a decision, for example, to start a COVID antiviral drug.

The PCR test can be performed by the doctor at his/her practice, who then sends it to a laboratory for analysis.  


Since 1st January 2023, tests are reimbursed under the compulsory basic insurance scheme (AOS) and only if prescribed by a doctor.

With a doctor's prescription, you will have to pay:

  • the price of the test as long as your franchise amount has not been reached
  • 10% of the price of the test if your franchise has been reached
Without a medical prescription and in all other cases, the cost of the test will be at your expense.


Current context

On 8th December 2022, the Federal Parliament decided to end the systematic reimbursement of COVID tests by the Confederation. This is an important change and a new step in the standardisation process. Normalisation means that COVID becomes a disease similar to other diseases, especially respiratory viruses (such as influenza or bronchiolitis , in terms of treatment.

The priority is to avoid transmission, and the measures to do so are well established and easy to apply. Henceforth, as with other diseases, it is up to your general practicionner to decide on the strategy to be implemented, from testing to treatment.

Testing in the event of travel

If you are planning to travel abroad, you should find out what are the requirements of the destination country as well as the transport company.  The following sites provide information on country requirements for certification and testing.


The tropical and travel medicine consultation unit of the Geneva University Hospitals (HUG) provides an updated summary document of the rules applying  in each country. It is available in French on HUG - General information regarding COVID tests : List of countries.

Book an appointment  with the HUG.

Testing for travel purposes is at the expense of the person concerned. Following a negative test, a certificate is issued by the HUG tropical and travel medicine consultation unit.


Checklist for travelling abroad  

Last updated
2 February 2023

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