More than 10 million people have now signed up to the NHS App, with over 6 million new users since the COVID-19 vaccination status service was added on 17 May.
The app’s COVID-19 vaccine status service allows users easily to show their proof of vaccine, which will help people to travel abroad, start returning to workplaces and attend largescale events as we cautiously proceed with the roadmap.
Over 30 countries recognise the NHS COVID Pass as proof of their vaccination status. People who have been vaccinated with both doses will not have to quarantine on their return to England from an amber list country - except France - from 19 July, providing they received their second jab at least 14 days prior, providing even greater freedom in travel over the summer months.
Two-thirds of UK adults have now received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine and the government is on track to meet its target of offering all adults a second dose by mid-September.
The increase in app downloads also has potentially life-saving benefits as over 90,500 people have registered their organ donation preference via the app during May and June. Registering a preference helps NHS specialist nurses to quickly understand what people want to happen to their organs, and enables them to discuss their wishes directly with their family.
Users are also benefiting from easier access to NHS Services. During May and June over 1,248,800 repeat prescriptions were ordered and over 103,900 GP appointments booked via the app, saving valuable time for patients and clinicians.
Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said:
“As we cautiously reopen, the NHS COVID Pass will enable people to prove their vaccination status when travelling abroad and support venues and businesses to reopen safely, while protecting staff and the public.
“The NHS App is a fantastic example of how technology supports us in delivering health care. Not only is the app helping us start to get back to doing the things we love, it is helping us book GP appointments, view test results and medical records, and make life-saving decisions such as organ donation which bring wider benefits to the health system.”
Simon Bolton, Interim Chief Executive at NHS Digital, said:
“The NHS App is currently the UK’s most popular app with over 2.5 million new users last month alone.
“Thousands of people are using the app every day to access their NHS COVID Pass and we’ve seen a big increase in the use of other features in the app, including registering organ donation preferences.
“App users are also helping to free up time for GP surgeries by using the app to book appointments and order repeat prescriptions online.”
Trials of the COVID Pass in domestic settings supported the beginning of a summer of sport and culture through the government’s Events Research Programme. And from Monday businesses, events and services are being encouraged to use the COVID pass to help reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19.
As we begin to cautiously reopen, the government will work with organisations that operate large, crowded settings including nightclubs to use the NHS COVID Pass as a condition of entry.
To support businesses in using the COVID Pass the NHS COVID Pass Verifier App launched this weekend, as a fast, secure and easy way of allowing people to demonstrate their COVID pass is valid, giving staff confidence in the legitimacy of what is being presented to them.
The NHS COVID Pass Verifier App has been designed to support venues, businesses and those most at risk who would like to verify a person’s COVID-19 status. Venues can conduct a visual check of an individual’s NHS COVID Pass with security features including an animated shimmer that cannot be screen grabbed. It is a fast, secure way to scan the 2D barcode on an individual’s NHS COVID Pass and verify whether or not they have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, had a negative test, or have recovered from the virus - allowing staff to check the legitimacy of what is being presented to them.
Guidance has already been made available to venues under the Events Research Programme making clear what checks staff should carry out to ensure individuals are showing genuine proof of their COVID-19 status.
Matthew Gould, Chief Executive of NHSX, said:
“We built the NHS COVID Pass in weeks, delivered it on time, and are really pleased with its progress. With 6m more users on the NHS app, more on the way, and the prospect of putting the COVID Pass into other patient apps, we are creating a powerful platform for the NHS to do so much more for our citizens online.
“We will see a further hike in demand for the NHS COVID Pass as businesses follow government guidance and consider using it at high-risk venues and events.
“We will continue listening to user feedback and keep improving the service.”