The NHS App has hit a milestone as more than 12 million people have downloaded it since Covid-19 passports became available.
The surge in downloads takes the app to more than 16 million users in total. The app, which allows people to download and view their Covid-19 vaccination status, also signposts users to organ donation and other NHS services.
More than 1.5 million people have now used the app to manage their organ donation preference, with 265,000 of these registering their organ donation for the first time via the app.
Speaking at London Tech Week health secretary Sajid Javid said: “The benefits of technology are enormous. Nowhere has tech transformation proved its worth more than in health and care.
“We all owe so much not just to our doctors, nurses and colleagues on the front line but also the coders, developers and innovators who helped our NHS stay so strong.
“We’ve seen what healthtech can do at a time when health systems around the world were under incredible strain. We must build on the progress that we’ve all seen and deliver this long-awaited digital revolution.”
Further figures reveal that since Covid-19 passports became available on the app in May, almost 3.2 million repeat prescriptions were ordered and more than 268,000 GP appointments booked via the app.
Matthew Gould, chief executive of NHSX, said: “This is tech saving lives. By making it easier for people to set their preferences for organ donation, we have thousands more people whose organs might now be used to save others.
“We will be developing the NHS App so people can use it to drive their own care, set their own preferences, and stay healthy.”
Alex Hudson, head of the NHS organ donor register at NHS Blood and Transplant, added: “By enabling people to check, amend and update their organ donation decision, the NHS app makes it easier than ever for people to manage and control their own organ donation decision.
“Even though organ donation has changed to an opt out system, it is important for people to be aware that families will still always be approached before organ donation goes ahead. When a person has proactively registered their organ donation decision, we know this provides great comfort and reassurance for families at what is an incredibly difficult time.”
Hudson urged more people to download the app and register their preference during Organ Donation Week from September 20-29.
The NHS App was launched in 2018 and offers services including symptom checking and triage; appointment booking; repeat prescription ordering; access to patient records; and national data opt-out.
Covid-19 passports have been available through the app since May 17. It allows people to prove their vaccination status if required for international travel and also allows users to check their vaccine record, including how many doses they have had and which jab they received.
Previous figures showed between May 17 and 20 more than 11,000 people registered an organ donor preference using the app, with a daily average of 2,870. It marked a ten-fold increase in the number of people registering an organ donation preference in April, which averaged about 300 per day.
Last week Javid scrapped plans to introduce Covid-19 passports as proof of vaccination for nightclubs and large events in England.