New app with specially trained NHS staff helps partially-sighted people with rapid COVID testing

England to scrap free lateral flow tests for most people from Friday April 1. Image: Twitter

A new app will make it easier for partially-sighted people to use rapid COVID testing at home, thanks to specially trained NHS staff and video support services.
A new app called Be My Eyes from the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) will help partially-sighted people to take lateral flow tests at home.
According to the official statement on the government website:
The service has been launched following an ongoing partnership between UKHSA and the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB), the Macular Society, Thomas Pocklington Trust, Visionary and Be My Eyes app, to help make testing more accessible.
“The Be My Eyes app connects people with low to moderate vision with agents from 119 through a live video call. Users can now benefit from live video assistance from NHS Test and Trace staff to help guide them through how to order, use the tests and register their test results.”
UKHSA chief executive Dame Jenny Harries said:
“Rapid testing continues to play a vital role in combating the spread of COVID-19. This important new service will help make it easier for partially sighted people to use rapid tests in the comfort of their own home.”
Mike Wordingham, Policy Officer for the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB), said:
“Since early on in the pandemic, RNIB has been working with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to improve the accessibility of at-home tests with more than 100 blind and partially sighted people involved in exploring solutions.
“We are pleased the Be My Eyes app will enable thousands more people with sight loss to connect with live video assistance to carry out tests as it is vital this happens to enable people to keep themselves and their communities safe. We look forward to continuing the work to ensure testing is made accessible to all, including through the provision of the new instructions in braille, audio and large print formats.”
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Tamsin Brown

Originally from London, Tamsin is based in Malaga and is a local reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering Spanish and international news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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