Coronavirus: NHS Covid-19 app can't process thousands of test results

26 September 2020, 15:49 | Updated: 26 September 2020, 17:50

The Department of Health and Social Care has said it is "urgently working" to resolve the issue
The Department of Health and Social Care has said it is "urgently working" to resolve the issue. Picture: PA
Rachael Kennedy

By Rachael Kennedy

Officials say they are working "urgently" to fix an issue with the newly-launched NHS coronavirus app after it was discovered thousands of test results had not been linked up.

Users who have results of Covid-19 tests carried out in an NHS hospital or Public Health England lab have found they are unable to enter their result into the app, which was made available across England and Wales earlier this week.

This also includes results of tests done as part of the Office for National Statistics' national surveillance programme.

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On Friday, news of the glitch was revealed in a tweet from the official app account to a user who said they had taken a test and wanted to enter their result but had been asked to input a code they did not have.

The account said in response: "If your test took place in a Public Health England lab or NHS hospital, or as part of national surveillance testing conducted by the Office for National Statistics, test results cannot currently be linked with the app whether they're positive or negative."

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The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) said it was aware of the current issue and was "urgently working" to resolve it, amid reports that more than 60,000 test results could have been missed off the charter.

In a statement, a DHSC spokeswoman assured that any tests booked through the app are automatically recorded, but that work was underway to allow people with positive results from outside the app to be able to enter a code.

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She said: "NHS Test and Trace will continue to contact people by text, email or phone if your test is positive, advising you to self-isolate and for those who don't have a code the contact tracers will shortly be able to provide codes to insert in the app.

"If you book your test via the app the results will be automatically recorded in the app and the isolation countdown will be updated."

The government in Wales, however, assured that this wasn't a problem relating to their system.

A tweet following the DHSC statement said: "This issue doesn't apply to Wales. We took the decision to link our all-Wales laboratory testing systems with the NHS Covid-19 app.

"Here you'll get a code in your test result notifications to enter into the app, whether your result is positive or negative."