Tuesday, 6 Dec 2022

‘Only HALF’ of Brits using NHS tracing app in hopes of avoiding another pingdemic

Track and Trace: Expert discusses number of people using app

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Technology Journalist Geoff White sat down with Sky News to discuss ways to stop the spread of Omicron. Mr White told Sky News presenter Kay Burley this morning that the Test and Trace app should be used by all Brits, as the app alerts people when they have been in contact with someone with coronavirus. When notified by the Test and Trace app you will be advised to isolate for up to ten days to stop the spread of coronavirus. Mr White warned that people are not using the NHS app as much as they should be, which is leading to the surge. The Government first introduced the Test and Trace service last year, in response to the global pandemic, the app could run until at least 2025 as recently published documents have suggested.

Mr White said: “The question is how many people are still using this contact tracing app to alert their contacts to a positive test.

“And the figures I’ll be looking at indicate probably not enough, in England and Wales for example only about half, 50% of people who have downloaded the app are using it to alert their close contacts.

“And North of the border in Scotland things are even worse, it’s only about 1 in 5, about 20% of people who have downloaded the app are using it to alert their close contacts.

“And that’s really important as you’ll well know in Scotland what they have decided, is if you are close to somebody who has tested positive for Coronavirus, you yourself must isolate until you’ve passed a PCR test.

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Mr White added: “Well, the question is how do you know you’ve been close to someone who’s got covid. One of the answers to that, a key answer is through the app.”

Unlike journalist Geoff White’s advice, another expert has given counter comments on the Track and Trace app.

When asked on BBC Radio 4 this morning about ways to counter the spread of Omicron, Professor Tim Spector said: “I don’t think NHS Test and Trace is going to work in this scenario because it only takes about two days from meeting someone to getting an infection.

“That often isn’t enough time to do much about it, you’ve already spread it by the time you’ve been contacted by Test and Trace in my opinion.

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Mr Spector added: “So I think people need to do their own health check, see if they’ve got any cold-like symptoms, get a lateral flow test just before you meet people.

“and make sure everyone else is doing the same, that’s the safest way if you are going to go out at this time of year.”

And advice from Chief Medical Officer, Professor Chris Whitty warned people to get their booster jabs before the end of December.

Mr Whitty said: “There is a new variant of COVID-19 – Omicron – which is highly infectious and spreading fast.

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Stats show that 98 percent of people are living within a 10 miles radius of a vaccination centre in the UK, with new vaccine centre locations popping up every day for adults to get their third shot.

Mr Whitty added: “Every adult in the country needs to get a COVID-19 booster vaccine.

“Boosters give you the best possible protection against the virus and should significantly reduce your risk of serious illness and hospitalisation.

“Get your COVID-19 booster vaccine to strengthen your protection. Please, get boosted now.”

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