Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council has teamed up with NDL to provide an electronic form for residents to book Covid-19 tests.

The collaboration has meant that the council has been able to deliver over 1,000 Covid-19 tests per week and at its peak the electronic forms were used to provide 287 tests in one day.

The council already had a working relationship with NDP, through a prior Robotic Process Automation (RPA) project. In response to the pandemic, the two organisations worked together to deliver an easy-to-use, fully integrated public test booking eForm solution that was secure and allowed for ongoing flexibility.

The final solution bypassed the original system that was lengthier and prone to various issues resulting in local residents waiting longer than necessary. It was also open to human error, as each stage required human intervention.

The streamlined approach of the eForm removed the need for staff to intervene which meant cancelled slots could be filled automatically. Residents can access the eForms booking system on their digital device, select an appointment slot and test centre convenient for them and then receive an instant confirmation of their booking. The system meant residents received an improved service, while overheads and admin time were slashed for the council.

The various data points that are now available also meant that a QR code check-in process could quickly be introduced for residents requiring immediate tests.

NDL works with public sector organisations to help them overcome challenges. The Royal Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust also used NDL to deliver a series of eForms including a lateral flow test submissions and two Covid-19 risk assessment forms.

Tom Wright, head of digital engagement at NDL said: “The digital systems in place have created a great improvement in the service and experience for residents and streamlined the lengthy and time-consuming process of managing Covid-19 test bookings and recordings.

“Delivering over 1,000 COVID-19 tests per week to local residents is a great outcome for Wigan Council, and it just goes to show that digital strategies are the way forward for keeping up with increasing demand and administration tasks, especially during a crisis.”