The coronavirus test and trace system that was launched in Scotland and England on Thursday crashed on the first day in operation, with several NHS workers complaining that they were unable to log into the new website.
The government had revealed the first details of its manual track and trace programme on 27th May, stating that nearly 25,000 contact tracers have been recruited and trained for the new service.
These workers will make thousands of calls per day to track the spread of coronavirus in the country. The intent is that they will call people who have tested positive for coronavirus and collect information about other people that they have had come in contact with.
The contacts thought to be at risk of infection will be asked to isolate themselves for two weeks even if they don't have any coronavirus symptoms.
The government believes the new system will help to control the deadly virus, which has claimed more than 37,000 lives in the country.
"As we move to the next stage of our fight against coronavirus, we will be able to replace national lockdowns with individual isolation and, if necessary, local action where there are outbreaks," said UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock.
However, it appears that government's test and trace service is not yet prepared for full operation.
According to the Telegraph, even before the launch of the programme's website on Thursday, many workers said that they had received a message about a "critical incident" in the service. Some tracers also complained that they were unable to log into the system to start the work.
Many volunteers who had not received their logon details on Thursday said that they have been asked not to contact the support teams while they try to resolve the problems in the system.
In a conference call, Baroness Dido Harding, the head of the programme, told MPs that the system will not be fully operational until the end of the next month.
Following the call, Labour MP Ben Bradshaw said in a tweet that he was "not sure where that leaves Johnson's promise of a fully operational 'world beating' system by Monday."
Privacy experts have also raised concerns about the proposed NHSX COVID-19 contact tracing app, which is currently being tested on the Isle of Wight and is expected to be launched to the rest of Britain in June.
Last month, 117 academics and privacy experts signed a public letter to government, stating that the "health benefits of a digital solution should be analysed in depth by specialists from all relevant academic disciplines, and sufficiently proven to be of value to justify the dangers involved".
The NHSX is currently working to create a contact tracing app that will not rely on API developed by Google and Apple.
It would rather use a centralised approach, which would allow government officials to have more control over who receives notifications from the system. Moreover, NHSX says that it will be able to analyse the data and adapt the system more quickly if information is held on a centralised system.
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