Last night (31st October 2020), the UK Government declared a new national lockdown starting on Thursday 5th November 2020 through the next 1 month.
Clearly COVID-19 is still very much amongst us, and we have struggled to “make it work”. Infection rates are going up, people are still dying and businesses especially those in the hospitality sector have struggled to break even.
The rules of the new lockdown allows schools, construction sites and certain workplaces to stay open. How are they less at risk? Was a risk assessment carried out that led to these measures? Why are these places to stay open and functional? To keep the economy alive and going? To ensure students continue to learn? Why?
Whatever the reasons are, clearly these places must be able to work with and manage COVID-19. Here are some digital ways we can manage COVID-19 in our various workplaces and life.
1. Covid Symptom App
I bet you didn’t know about this one right?
The COVID Symptom Study app is a global public science project supported by the UK government and crowd-funding, with more than 4.2 million participants providing vital health data to help researchers and the NHS understand and beat COVID-19.
Data from the COVID Symptom Study app is enabling researchers to monitor the spread of COVID-19 across the UK based on user postcodes, identifying hotspots sooner than any other method. It has also provided powerful insights into the disease and its symptoms, helping to identify who is most at risk.
The COVID Symptom Study is the largest data set in the world supporting scientific investigation of “long COVID”, and is supporting trials of vaccines and medicines for the disease. The app is also used to investigate other scientific questions, such as the role of diet, vitamins and lifestyle in COVID-19.
The COVID Symptom Study app provides daily updates on the estimated number of COVID-19 cases in the UK and your local area.
In addition to the three ‘classic symptoms’, the COVID Symptom Study app monitors other potentially important signs of COVID-19. This includes headache, fatigue, gastrointestinal symptoms, confusion or skin rash, which may be especially relevant in the older population as well as children.
Although, the COVID Symptom Study app is not directly connected to the NHS Test and Trace service. The app also does not have any contact tracing or QR check-in facilities. It cannot access your phone’s Bluetooth, GPS, location data or contacts, does not track you as you move around, and can’t tell if you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus.
To learn more about the app and how you date will be used, please visit
2. NHS COVID-19 App
Now this is one we all know. It presently has mixed reviews but we rely on the NHS for our healthcare (most of us in the UK) so it’s important we have access to the official app and USE it.
The NHS COVID-19 app is only available in England and Wales, there are different apps in Scotland and Northern Ireland. In Scotland, they have the Test and Protect app and in Northern Ireland, they have StopCOVID NI app.
The app is currently available in 12 languages (English, Welsh, Bengali, Urdu, Gujarati, Punjabi (Gurmukhi script), Chinese (Simplified), Romanian, Turkish, Arabic (Modern Standard), Polish, and Somali, with more to follow soon.
Anyone aged 16 or over who lives in England or Wales can use the NHS COVID-19 app. The NHS COVID-19 app supports the government’s efforts to control the spread of the virus through testing and contact tracing.
The NHS COVID-19 app has been built in collaboration with some of the most innovative organisations in the world.
The app runs on proven software developed by Apple and Google, designed so that nobody will know who or where you are. And you can delete your data, or the app, at any time.
- Trace: find out when you’ve been near other app users who have tested positive for coronavirus.
- Alert: lets you know the level of coronavirus risk in your postcode district.
- Check-in: get alerted if you’ve visited a venue where you may have come into contact with coronavirus, using a simple QR code scanner. No more form filling.
- Symptoms: check if you have coronavirus symptoms and see if you need to order a test.
- Test: helps you order a test if you need to.
- Isolate: keep track of your self-isolation countdown and access relevant advice.
The NHS COVID-19 app is free to download from the App Store and Google Play.
What’s a workplace that doesn’t provide training and information to their staff?
With many still unable to make the move online, it’s only natural you find other ways to weather this storm until you can finally have you own online learning school. That said, we offer a Done With You and Done For You service to help build your online school. If interested, please book a slot in our calendar.
Futurelearn is a fantastic place to learn with top educators from around the world. You learn 100% online with world-class universities and industry experts, develop your career, learn a new skill, or pursue your hobbies with flexible online courses.
To learn more about COVID-19 or to get your team trained on various related topics or even to see what COVID-19 topics Futurelearn has to offer, click this link.
We all know how our mental health has taken a dive during this trying period. Some have been able to bounce back pretty quickly while many still struggle with various mental health challenges. As employers, the wellbeing of your staff should be a priority.
Richard Branson’s famous quote says…
“Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of the clients.”
Visit Headspace’s page on COVID-19 and mental health for some information and guide on maintaining good mental health especially with going into another lockdown. They also offer some meditations you can listen to anytime.
In the Headspace app, which is free for everyone, they have a section called Weathering the storm. It includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help you out, however you’re feeling. Headspace says “It’s our small way of helping you find some space and kindness for yourself and those around you”.
5. Coronavirus Support App (UK)
The Coronavirus Support App is a not-for-profit app that enables you to make reliable health information instantly accessible, promote safe self-care and signpost sources of support – via your smartphones.
The app provides information, support and reassurance to help people:
- assess COVID-19 symptoms – recognise the symptoms of coronavirus (including the warning signs) and know what to do next
- manage in a crisis – know how to seek help when experiencing domestic abuse or feeling suicidal
- address mental health problems – such as depression, anxiety and disordered eating
- deal with the impact on everyday life – including money worries and work issues
- know what to do if in an ‘at-risk’ group – such as having asthma or diabetes, or belonging to an at-risk ethnic group
- learn where to go for more information – including government and NHS guidance and national charities
- find out where to go for support – such as NHS services and national helplines
This app is not part of the government’s ‘track-and-trace’ programme and does not collect any user-identifiable data. Users don’t need to sign up.
They provide local information for the Bristol area only but the app can be used by anyone. So come on, get downloading!
Last but not the least, is the WerAreWe app.
WerAreWe is a bespoke sign-in/out system for schools and busines;
- enabling NMBS (UK National Minimum Boarding Standards)
- 15.5 tracking (socially distanced and contactless),
- contact tracing (Covid-19), and
- quick/safe emergency evacuation (fire or live threat) management.
It requires no communal surface use and can be accessed via any internet connected device.
WerAreWe have been working with boarding schools, and the UK Fire Services, over the last two years .
Implementation is quick and easy as it is data/hardware light and will provide Tutors, Housemistresses/masters, and Senior Leadership Teams quick access to staff and students’ locations, location history and essential personal information.
You need to see it in action to understand how powerful this can be especially for contact tracing in house. This demo was done for schools but the app can be used by corporates and basically any workplace.
If you would like to get your hands on this, send us a message. HSEWise has got a special rate for her customers so yes you will be paying less than you should because we love you. Contact us now.