Royal Mail Group Workforce – NHS Test & Trace App Compliance
A significant number of reports have been received from ASRs over recent months regarding management ‘manipulation’ and malpractice in respect of NHS ‘Test and Trace’ notifications to employees advising them to self-isolate. The reports from various parts of the country involve managers telling staff to either ignore the NHS Test and Trace self-isolation messages, switch off their mobile phones when NHS Test and Trace messages are received, put their mobile phones in their lockers whilst at work, re-set the App when a Test and Trace message arrives, cancel the notification etc., and so on.
After repeatedly taking these matters up with Royal Mail Group HQ and the Royal Mail Group Head of Occupational Health, the following communication was issued on 2 February and the topic has also been covered on RMTV. In short, Royal Mail and Parcelforce strongly support The NHS Test and Trace App.
Royal Mail Group Communication:
Royal Mail is supporting the use of the NHS Covid-19 App. We want to encourage everyone to download the NHS Covid-19 app on their phone.Guidance on how you can do this is available through the link: https://covid19.nhs.uk/ There is no requirement for QR codes to be displayed in workplaces which means we do not need to display QR codes in our units, offices or canteens. Please remove these if they are in place.
If you are in contact with someone who later tests positive for coronavirus, the app will be able to alert you and provide instructions on what to do if applicable. You must read the alert very carefully and follow the advice. Some of the guidance you will receive is optional, some of it is mandatory.
If you develop symptoms and test positive, the app can be used to alert others you might have been in contact with and potentially share advice with them. Similar apps are live in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Government guidance is that once you have downloaded the app, it should be left on as much as possible. However, there are some specific scenarios when you should pause the contact tracing feature. These include:
- When you are working behind a Perspex (or equivalent) screen (for example, in a Customer Service Point).
- If you are putting your phone in storage, such as in a work locker, and it will not be on your person.
Contact tracing can be paused within the app by moving the contact tracing toggle on the home screen. It’s important you turn the contact tracing toggle back on as soon as you are not in one of the above scenarios so that if you are in contact with someone who later tests positive for coronavirus, the app will be able to alert you and provide instructions on what to do if applicable.
Anyone who develops symptoms of coronavirus should self-isolate and request a test immediately. You can access up-to-date guidance on what steps to take whilst self-isolating on the NS website at this link: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/self-isolation-and-treatment/
Employees should fully comply with instructions provided by the NHS and keep their line manager informed.
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer