NHS COVID-19 app

The NHS COVID-19 app closed down on 27 April 2023. It was a fast way to see if you were at risk from COVID-19 and an easy way to alert others if you tested positive.

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The NHS COVID-19 app has closed down, so this content is out of date.

People using the NHS COVID-19 app in England and Wales have helped to break chains of transmission and reduce infections.

Leading scientists at the University of Oxford and University of Warwick have estimated that the app prevented around 1 million cases, 44,000 hospitalisations and 9,600 people dying during its first year alone (‘Nature Communications’ paper, February 2023)

Over the past year, the success of the vaccination programme increased access to treatments and high immunity in the population have enabled the government to target its COVID-19 services. This includes providing continued access to government-funded testing, vaccinations and treatments for people at highest risk from the virus.

The number of people actively using the NHS COVID-19 app has steadily reduced since July 2021. Since access to government-funded testing ended for most people, fewer positive test results have been entered in the app and, as a result, fewer notifications sent to close contacts.

The UK Health Security Agency is committed to providing the most effective public health services and has decided to close the NHS COVID-19 app down. It will use the knowledge, technology and lessons learnt from the app to help respond to future pandemic threats.

It is important that you continue to follow the latest guidance to protect yourself and others:

This includes reporting NHS lateral flow test results on GOV.UK. If you’re eligible for COVID-19 treatment, you must report your result so the NHS can contact you about treatment.

Find out about your app data and privacy

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Download the NHS COVID-19 app

The NHS COVID-19 app is available to download for free in England and Wales.

If you live in either nation and are 16 or over, you can download the app on your phone.

The app includes a number of features to help you protect yourself and others, including:

  • getting alerts to let you know if you may be at risk from coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • a symptoms checker
  • the latest advice based on your circumstances
  • general information on COVID-19
  • entering a positive result (from an NHS or paid-for test) to alert others if they may be at risk

The app will provide you with the latest information depending on where you live. Guidance may differ in England and Wales.

The app will be updated from time to time with new functionality and improvements. The latest version includes up-to-date features and advice so it’s important to keep it updated.

For your vaccination status, use the separate NHS app (England only).

Introduction to the NHS app.

Get help with the app

The app is available in 12 different languages and you can select your preferred language in the settings.

Find out more about who can use the NHS COVID-19 app.

The NHS COVID-19 app uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to understand the distance, over time, between app users. Typically, you’ll be sent an exposure notification with guidance if you’ve been within 2 metres of someone for 15 minutes or longer who has since tested positive for COVID-19.

If a person tests positive for COVID-19, reports the result in the app, and agrees to share their random IDs, the app will calculate the risk to every app user they came into contact with in the previous few days – with this information, the app will work out whether a user should get an exposure notification.

Find out more about how the app works.

How the app protects your data

The NHS COVID-19 app protects your privacy and identity from other app users – and their privacy and identity from you. The app uses random IDs that cannot be used by the NHS or the government to identify who you are, or who you’ve spent time with. This is why your vaccination records and COVID pass appear separately in the NHS app (England only).

Additional information

Data about app usage and uptake

Digital 119 feedback form

NHS COVID-19 app: privacy information

NHS COVID-19 app: accessibility

NHS COVID-19 app statistics

Published 13 May 2022
Last updated 28 March 2023 + show all updates
  1. Added notice explaining that the app will be closing down on 27 April.

  2. Updated to reflect the app version 5.0 changes.

  3. Added NHS COVID-19 app statistics.

  4. Added links to translated versions.

  5. Added video about the NHS COVID-19 app.

  6. First published.