Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


How secure is the BioSmart website?

It is impossible for any website to guarantee 100% security, however, we apply all the necessary measures to ensure data is securely collected and stored.

Do I need a referral to purchase a test on BioSmart?

No medical referral is necessary.

Are BioSmart tests covered by medical aid?

Some tests are covered by certain medical aid providers. Check with your provider if you are unsure. 

What type of samples are required for testing?

The sample we require will depend on the specific test, the patient’s sex (biological and physiological characteristics) and/or sexual orientation. It can be a blood or swab test (buccal, vaginal, penile or genital sore).

How long will it take for my test kit to arrive?

It will take approximately 2 to 4 working days for your test kit to be delivered.


An email will be sent from the courier company to the email address you provided with a link to the courier’s track and trace system, allowing you to track your shipment.


Instructions for the return of your sample are documented on the insert within the sampling kit.

How should samples be returned?

It is important to follow the instructions on the sample kit insert closely because samples that are not packaged correctly will be rejected by the laboratory without refund.


First place the sample in the sample kit box. Then place the sample kit box in the biohazard press seal bag as instructed (only samples from ONE patient per biohazard bag). Remember to include the desiccant if one is provided (a packet filled with material that prevents condensation by absorbing and holding moisture).


Finally, patient details MUST be included in the document sleeve of the biohazard bag – including the unique registration number that is emailed to you after successfully registering for a test via the website and the barcode number on the sample tube.

How do the samples reach the laboratory?

Deliveries to the laboratory from all over the country are handled by RAM Couriers.

Why are some samples rejected?

Samples are rejected when they are not collected as instructed and cannot be processed.

How accurate are the test results?

We strive to consistently deliver the most accurate test results possible.


The tests are performed in the laboratory under ISO 15189 guidelines. All tests are fully validated and are SAHPRA approved. Our laboratory staff are all fully trained and HPCSA registered. All results are overseen by our Pathologist.

Which sex should I choose if I am transgender, transexual or intersex?

We use sex (biological and physiological characteristics) to determine which sample kit to send. So, for the purposes of ordering tests, you will need to select your sex based on what genitals you have. If you were born with both sets of genitals, please get in touch before ordering so we can advise on the most suitable test for you.

What is the turnaround time for results?

Turnaround time for results will depend on the test taken, delivery times and analysis process. Results may take between 24 and 72 hours to reach you via email from the date we receive your sample(s). Paternity testing is a more complex process and so results can be expected 5 working days from the date we receive your samples.

Who will be able to see my test results?

Your test results will only be seen by our highly trained, professional pathologists and the necessary trusted employees assisting with processing – all of whom have signed a data protection agreement. We will never share your results with anyone else without your permission.

Our policy regarding the protection of your personal information?

We are fully compliant with the Protection of Personal Information (POPI) Act. For more information, please contact us.

What if I need advice regarding my results?

We are linked to doctors who can offer you telephonic consultations and scripts for any necessary medications – which can be discreetly delivered to your chosen address. 

You are also welcome to email with your questions. Alternatively, you can always consult your doctor for guidance.

What if I have a complaint?

Please contact us . We will do our best to resolve the issue.

Covid-19 tests

Does BioSmart test for the virus that causes Covid-19?

Yes, testing for the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19 is performed in our state-of-the-art laboratory using SAHPRA approved qPCR (quantitative polymerase chain reaction) Covid-19 tests that detect two different SARS-CoV-2 genes: N1 and N2. There is also an internal control that detects the presence of human RNase P. A positive result means all three of these genes have been detected in the sample.

Why should we get tested?

In order to prevent the spread of the virus, testing is critical. Many people, especially children, can spread the virus without knowing they are infected. Unfortunately, the virus can be deadly for some people, including the elderly. Those with diabetes or cardiovascular disease are especially at risk.


Testing identifies both symptomatic and asymptomatic carriers so they can self-isolate, minimising the risk of transmission. This is one of the most effective ways of protecting everyone.

I was exposed to someone who tested positive. When should I test myself?

Please consult your doctor.

You can also view the latest Covid-19 quarantine, isolation and contact tracing regulations for South Africa here.

Why anterior nasal swabs?

Our aim is to make testing more accessible via non-invasive sampling. The sensitivity of anterior nasal swab samples has been extensively validated on our platform following protocols that have been given Emergency Use Authorization by the CDC (USA).


How to Collect an Anterior Nasal Swab Specimen for Covid-19 Testing

Can I travel with a BioSmart Covid-19 RT-PCR test?

Yes. Results are sent in a PDF file and contain a verifiable QR code.

What if I need advice regarding my Covid-19 results?

You are welcome to email with your questions. Alternatively, you can always consult your doctor for guidance.

For general Covid-19 related queries, please click here to go to South Africa’s Covid-19 resource website.

How accurate are Covid-19 test results?

The RT-PCR test is the most accurate way of detecting the virus that causes Covid-19.

What is the difference between the antibody test and the RT-PCR test?

The RT-PCR test will tell you if you are currently infected with the virus that causes Covid-19.

The antibody test will tell you if you have had Covid-19.

What is the sensitivity and specificity of the Covid-19 RT-PCR test?

The tests performed by the BioSmart laboratory are approved by SAHPRA.

Sensitivity (clinical) on low viral load: 94.1%
Sensitivity (clinical) on high viral load: 100%
Specificity (analytical): 100%

What is the turnaround time for Covid-19 results?

RT-PCR test results will be delivered to you via email the day after your sample is collected. For faster results, at an additional fee, contact us by email:

Are the RT-PCR tests covered by medical aid?

We are a registered pathology lab with the following practice number: 1098772.


We can provide you with a detailed invoice that can be submitted to your medical aid provider.

STI tests

Which STIs can/does BioSmart test for?

  • Neisseria Gonorrhoeae (NG)
  • Chlamydia Trachomatis (CT)
  • Trichomonas Vaginalis (TV)
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
  • HIV
  • Syphilis
  • Herpes Simplex 1
  • Herpes Simplex 2
  • Hepatitis B
  • Hepatitis C

Can I take an STI test during my menstrual cycle?

Yes, you can. However, results are likely to be more accurate if you wait until your cycle has ended.

What happens if I test positive for an STI?

If you tested positive for an STI, talk to a medical professional about the best course of treatment.

How accurate and/or reliable are STI test results?

Our laboratory adheres to the strictest protocols and quality standards to ensure results are as accurate as possible.

However, no STI test is 100% accurate and some STIs do not show up in tests immediately. Incubation periods:

  • Neisseria Gonorrhoeae (NG) 5 – 14 days
  • Chlamydia Trachomatis (CT) 7 – 21 days
  • Trichomonas Vaginalis (TV) 5 – 28 days
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV) 2 – 4 weeks
  • HIV 10 – 33 days
  • Syphilis 3 – 6 weeks
  • Herpes Simplex 1 4 – 6 Weeks
  • Herpes Simplex 2 4 – 6 Weeks
  • Hepatitis B 8 – 22 weeks
  • Hepatitis C 2 – 26 weeks

*Depending on type

Retesting for certain STIs is recommended.

Test results that show possible infection require further testing.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out.

How are STI test results received?

Via email in PDF format.

How do sample kit deliveries work?

We use RAM Couriers for deliveries within South Africa.

Is BioSmart’s packaging discreet?

Yes. The name of the test ordered will not appear on the packaging.

What if I only want to test for one STI?

Our Basic Three STI Tests – which entail self-sampling at home – enable us to screen for Trichomonas Vaginalis (TV), Chlamydia Trachomatis (CT) and Neisseria Gonorrhoeae (NG) at our accredited pathology laboratory.


It is possible to contract more than one STI at the same time, so testing for multiple infections is beneficial and often recommended. If you still want to only test for a specific STI, please talk to a medical professional for guidance.

When is it better to speak to / see a healthcare professional first?

We recommend that you first speak to / see a healthcare professional as soon as possible if you:

  • Have any symptoms
  • Are under the age of 18
  • Have been sexually assaulted
  • Are a woman and think you may be pregnant
  • Are a woman who has had unprotected sex in the last five days
  • Are a man who has had unprotected sex with another man or woman in the last three days

Can I be removed from your database?

If you would like to be removed from our database, please send an email to instructing us to erase your personal information. Please wait until your order and test results have been finalised and delivered to enable successful service delivery.

My sample kit has not arrived yet. What now?

If you have not received your sample kit within 1 to 5 working days, please send an email to with your full name, ID number and test token number, if applicable.

If my STI results come back positive, should I let my partner and previous partners know?

Yes. You should inform your partner(s) as well as anyone else you had sex with in the last 6 months. If they have an STI, or have contracted an STI from you, they could be passing it on to others. We understand that this may be extremely difficult, but if the roles were reversed, we assume you would like to know in order to start treatment ASAP. It could save someone’s life.

At-home Pap Smear

What is the At-home Pap Smear?

Cervical cancer is a preventable disease caused by certain high-risk strains of human papillomavirus (HPV). Regular screening for HPV is recognised as the best way to identify women who may be at risk of developing cervical cancer. Many countries recommend screening for all women between the ages of 21 and 65, yet women dislike internal examinations and pap smears.

Our self-sampling device allows women to perform a pap smear test safely and discreetly in the comfort of their home. Samples are collected by courier and analysed in our laboratory (via multiplex RT-PCR) for 16 different strains of HPV, 14 of which are recognised as high-risk cancer-causing strains.

Can I take the test during my menstrual cycle?

No. We recommend collecting a sample when you are not menstruating.

What happens if I test positive?

Historically smear tests, performed by general practitioners, were assessed in a laboratory for abnormalities in the cells of the cervix (cytology).

Advances in molecular testing technologies have changed the approach to pap smears which are first tested for the presence of those types of human papillomavirus that are associated with a high risk of developing cervical cancer.

Cytology tests should be performed on the smear if the HPV test is positive. Therefore, if you test positive for any of the high-risk HPV screens, you should seek professional help for further investigation.

How accurate and/or reliable are the test results?

Our laboratory adheres to the strictest protocols and quality standards to ensure results are as accurate as possible.

Test sensitivity and specificity

The clinical sensitivity of the HPV-test Sacace towards to HC2 was 100.0% (70/70×100%) and its clinical sensitivity towards to CIN2 + histological diagnosis was 98.6% (73/74×100%). Clinical sensitivity of HC2 towards to CIN2 + histological diagnosis was 94.6% (70/74×100%).

Clinical specificity of HPV-test Sacace towards to HC2 was 98.2% (701/715×100%) and its clinical specificity in screening in relation to a cytological diagnosis <CIN2 was 87.5% (712/814×100% ). Clinical specificity of HC2 towards to cytological diagnosis <CIN2 was 87.7% (714/814×100%).

How frequently should I do a pap smear?

Pap smears that are normal should be repeated every three years for women aged 21 to 65.

What should I avoid before using my At-home Pap Smear kit?

Avoid intercourse, douching and any vaginal medicines or spermicidal foams, creams or jellies for two days before using your At-home Pap Smear kit.

Paternity test

What is in the sample kit?

Our self-sampling kit for paternity testing contains clear instructions, swabs for sample collections (one for the alleged father and one for the child) and a preaddressed envelope for returning the samples for testing.

What results can I expect to see?

A man is most likely the biological father if the test reveals a probability of paternity of 99.9%. If a man is not the father, the test will reveal a probability of 0%.

Where and how are samples analysed?

Samples are analysed at our accredited laboratory with state-of-the-art equipment and systems.

How long do results take?

It depends on the test.

While they provide the same accurate results, the sample collection for legal paternity testing is done by an HPCSA registered professional.


Carry out an HPV/Cervical Cancer Screening Test by yourself at home.

Know your female fertility by checking your hormone levels.

Is your digestive tract performing at its best?

Check for vitamin B12 deficiency anaemia.

Determine if you are the biological father with a Peace of Mind or Legal test.