The NHS Covid-19 contact-tracing app launches today (24 September).
The app is designed to make it easy for people to record their visits to businesses including pubs, restaurants, hairdressers, cinemas and other places where people are likely to congregate for more than 15 minutes – such as universities, hospitals, leisure facilities civic centres and libraries.
The app offers a QR code check-in capability, allows users to book a free test and has an isolation countdown timer to remind people to quarantine. Businesses and other venues have been asked to display posters carrying the QR code specific to their venue, making check-in as easy as possible. For some businesses and venues this is a legal requirement.
The app uses Bluetooth technology to track time and distance between smartphone devices so can notify a user if they have been in proximity of a positive case. The NHS Test and Trace service will then contact users with public health advice.
The app will not hold any personal information about you or track your location. Check-in’s contact tracing and local area alerts are all done entirely anonymously.
People identified as having been in close contact with someone who has a positive test must stay at home for 14 days, even if they do not have symptoms, to stop unknowingly spreading the virus.
If those in isolation develop symptoms, they can book a test at nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119. If they test positive, they must continue to stay at home for 10 days or until their symptoms have passed. If they test negative, they must complete the 14-day isolation period.
Members of their household will not have to stay at home unless the person identified becomes symptomatic, at which point they must also self-isolate for 14 days to avoid unknowingly spreading the virus.
Download the app now from your app store or google play store. You can find out more information at covid19.nhs.uk