The British government has announced the launch of a new COVID-19 test and trace App, with trials taking place in parts of the country.
The NHS (National Health Service) Test and Trace App will start its trials from Thursday with residents on the Isle of Wight and NHS Volunteer Responders across England, followed shortly by residents in the London borough of Newham, according to the government.
“We’ve worked with tech companies, international partners, privacy and medical experts to develop an App that is simple to use, secure and will help keep the country safe,’’ said Health Secretary Matt Hancock.
The App has been designed to work alongside traditional contact tracing services and testing, to help people to understand if they are at risk of infection so they can take action to protect themselves and their communities.
It will log the time and distance a user has spent near to anyone, even if they do not know them, so it can alert them if necessary if that person later tests positive for COVID-19, and help them easily book a free test, and quickly get their results, the government said.
“Our statistics show more people with symptoms are getting tested and NHS Test and Trace reaches the vast majority of people testing positive, and their contacts,’’ said Hancock.
“We are seeing a significant rise in the number of people with symptoms getting tested, and 90 per cent of people who turned up to be tested got their results by the next day,’’ he said.