Every person who downloads the NHS Covid-19 app will be helping in the fight against coronavirus. The app will help the NHS understand where and how quickly the virus is spreading, so we can respond quickly and effectively. The app helps the NHS track the virus, not individuals.

The app has six key features to help protect everyone against coronavirus. This is what the features will do: 

app key features.jpg

Yes. You should download the app to use in your personal life, outside of work to help reduce the spread of transmission.

No. All staff (both clinical and non-clinical) must pause contact tracing on the app while you are at work. 

This is because the app will not know that, at work, you're protected by wearing surgical face masks, following infection prevention control measures and wearing additional PPE where necessary, so it is highly unlikely you would catch the virus.

If the app detects you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive during your working day, it will not know you were protected and you will be told to self-isolate. You will not be given information about where or when the contact was so will not know whether it was at a time when you were protected. If you leave the app on at work, you may have to self-isolate unnecessarily.

You can pause contact tracing within the app by moving the contact tracing toggle on the home screen. You can see this toggle at the bottom of the app screenshot below:


Test and trace app image.jpg

It is your responsibility to pause contact tracing each day you are working. Think of it as part of your routine, as important as putting on your face mask and PPE.

Tips to remind yourself so you don't forget:

  • Set an alarm on your phone for before you arrive at work each day

  • Add a daily reminder to your Outlook calendar you can pause as soon as you arrive if you forget to do so before you enter your workplace

  • Leave yourself a note on your door (or in your car if you drive to work) so you see it as you leave the house

  • Set an alarm or reminder at the end of your working day to turn it back on

  • There will soon be posters at all entrances and around our buildings to help remind you

If you receive an alert through the app stating that you are considered a contact of a case of Covid-19, you should immediately inform your line manager and our Hollins Park switchboard on 01925 664 000 (available 24/7) and self-isolate.

As the app is anonymised, it will not be clear whether your contact occurred within or outside the workplace. Our Track and Trace Team will carry out contact tracing around anyone employed by the Trust who has tested positive for Covid-19 as per standard protocols.

Please do not enter any North West Boroughs staff members' details into the app as the NHS will then send alerts to other app users who have spent time near you or in 'close contact' over the last few days. Staff members will then be asked to self-isolate unnecessarily as you will have been maintaining social distancing and wearing surgical face masks or full PPE.

You can choose to share details of anyone you have been in contact with socially.

The NHS Covid app uses Apple and Google exposure technology to work. If this technology identifies that you were within two metres of someone who later tests positive, it will send you an exposure notification. 

If you click on these messages and they disappear, with nothing showing within your app, then you don’t need to worry about them. They come directly from the technology and not the app. The app uses a risk-scoring algorithm to filter out ‘false alarms’ (for example, if you have walked past someone). 

You only need to take action if the notification comes directly from the app, takes you into the app when you click on it, it shows you advice. Visit faq.covid19.nhs.uk for further information.

No. Patients and visitors should not pause contact tracing in the app when they are wearing face coverings or face masks on our sites.