The challenge

NHS Trusts have been required to act quickly to adapt to the everchanging demands of the global pandemic and to reduce the spread of COVID.

To combat the challenges facing the healthcare sector, Trusts are required to make lateral home test kits available to their staff and promote their regular use.

Newcastle upon Tyne Foundation required an integrated digital solution with a choice of access routes to ensure inclusion, to be utilised usefully alongside their wider infection control efforts, including controlled test kit distribution and PCR confirmatory testing.

NHS Front Line staff are required to regularly self-test for COVID, swiftly act upon positive and inconclusive results, as well as adhering to the requirement for secondary care trusts to report this data back to Public Health England.

The solution

Health Call’s lateral testing kit and app – which was developed in just two weeks – were designed as an integrated digital solution to capture potential COVID infections in asymptomatic staff before they commence their shifts in in hospitals, care homes and other healthcare settings.

The rapid COVID staff testing app works alongside a self-testing kit to provide quick results and bespoke advice based on the outcome.

A survey, that can be accessed via mobile app or online portal, asks for test result and includes a confirmatory step to satisfy clinical safety requirements, which in turn provides staff members with advice bespoke to their reported result.

Requirements including staff members recording of the test kit’s serial number and contact details, provide data crucial for national and local reporting requirements. Trusts have access to the data which can be viewed at department level and supplied to Public Health England and NHS Digital.

How does it work?


  • Staff are provided with COVID lateral testing kits and upon receipt of a welcome email, they set up secure login details as well as downloading the app to their smart phone, tablet or access the online portal.
  • Whenever they perform a home test, staff record the latest contact number, test kit serial number and whether result positive, negative or unclear.
  • Following confirmation of the result (if unclear after two consecutive test results, advice is then automatically provided), submitted data is collected by the Trust via our API. Locally manipulated, it is made available for reporting to NHS Digital and Public Health England.


What are the benefits of the COVID Staff testing app?

  • The innovative app captures the potential of COVID infection in asymptomatic individuals prior to workers commencing their shifts, representing a clear benefit and mechanism to avoid unnecessary contact and lower risk in the healthcare setting.
  • Creating time, cost and resource efficiencies, it allows for automatically guided intervention advice. This has a positive impact by reducing staffing requirements as well as providing staff members with rapid reassurance, whatever their test outcome.
  • By reducing the unconscious spread of infection, we are protecting the vulnerable patient population and the wider community too.