Boris Johnson hints NHS Covid app pinging 'will end' as Brits to ditch quarantine and get test and release instead

BEING pinged by the NHS Covid app will end, Boris Johnson suggested today amid fears millions of double-jabbed Brits will be forced to isolate this summer.

The PM today dropped his biggest hint yet that getting the dreaded alert will stop and be replaced with test and release before August 16.

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Mr Javid sparked outcry when he delayed scrapping quarantine for fully-vaccinated people until August 16 – four weeks after July 19 Freedom Day.

With Covid cases surging, people have been deleting the app for fear of having to isolate even after getting both shots.

The PM said today: "I know how difficult it would have been for people and I'm sorry for the hassle that people experienced as a result of this.

"It is coming to an end, but what we want to do is use this next few weeks just to do more vaccinations until we're able to move from quarantining from isolation to a tested release system."

Downing Street today confirmed work was under way to tone down the app's settings to stop contacts being constantly pinged.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak earlier confirmed the Health Sec is looking at an "appropriate, balanced and proportionate" approach following the backlash.

Grilled on the farce Mr Sunak told Sky News: "I've spoken to the Health Secretary about this and he's aware of the frustration that people have around this.

"We have two different systems for the test and trace: we have obviously the NHS one, and we also have the app.

"I know most people's concerns rest with how the app is working and the Health Secretary is aware of that.

"The app counts for the majority of the people who need to isolate, I understand, on the numbers and he's looking at what the most appropriate, balanced and proportionate approach to isolation is in these circumstances."

Government sources confirmed the Health Sec was "taking advice" but played down any immediate changes to the app.

This week Sajid Javid laid out plans for double-jabbed Brits to skip quarantine if they are contacted by test and trace.

They will still have to take a PCR test to be sure they are in the clear.

Yesterday Sir Keir Starmer collared Boris Johnson about the prospect of millions forced to hunker down at home this summer.

The Labour leader blasted: "He ignored the problems in schools and now there are 700,000 children off per week.

“Now he’s ignoring the next big problem that’s heading down the track and going to affect millions of people who have to self-isolate.

“It won’t feel like ‘freedom day’ to those who have to isolate – when they are having to cancel their holidays, when they can’t go to the pub or even to their kid’s sports day.

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“And it won’t feel like freedom day to the businesses who are already warning of carnage because of the loss of staff and customers.”

He added: “There are already too many stories of people deleting the NHS app.

“And they’re doing it because they can see what’s coming down the track…millions of them are going to be pinged this summer to self-isolate.”

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