Important info for businesses and venues - NHS COVID-19 app

Released on 23 September 2020

South Staffordshire council news

Thursday 24 September 2020 sees the launch of the NHS COVID-19 app, which will be available across England and Wales. From that date, it will be a legal requirement for venues in the following services to display an official NHS QR Code poster that works with the new NHS COVID-19 app.  

This applies to:

  • Hospitality venues such as pubs, bars, restaurants, cafes and other hospitality settings open to the general public.
  • Tourism and leisure services including hotels, museums, leisure centres, gyms, cinemas, etc.
  • Close contact services including hairdressers, barbers, tailors and beauty salons.
  • Places of worship.
  • Facilities provided by local authorities including town halls and civic centres (for events) and libraries.  

Business owners need to:

  • Manage how all the Test and Trace information for their business is collected including the QR Code check-in.
  • Provide an alternative process to log the details of customers, visitors and staff without a smartphone or access to the app.
  • Create a unique QR Code for their venue online at and print and display the poster.
  • Encourage visitors to scan the poster.  

The app is an integral part of the NHS Test and Trace programme and the QR Code on the posters make the process of data collection easier for both the customer and the business so people using the premises can be contacted in the event of a coronavirus outbreak. Customers simply scan the code with their smartphone when they enter, and the phone app and QR Code create a digital record so the venue information is logged on the user's phone.  

What the app does:

  • Alerts you if you've been near other app users who have tested positive or coronavirus.
  • Lets you know the level of coronavirus risk in your postcode district.
  • Alerts you if you have visited a venue where you may have come into contact with coronavirus.
  • Provides a checklist of coronavirus symptoms to see if you need to order a free test.
  • Helps you book a test and get your result quickly.
  • If you need to self-isolate, it keeps track of your self-isolation countdown and provides relevant advice.  

Legal obligations for businesses
Businesses must have a system to request and record details of their customers, visitors and staff. They must make sure customers and staff are aware of the rules around QR Codes by displaying posters and speaking to customers directly. The regulations will be enforced by local authorities, who will have the power to issue fines of up to £1,000 for venues that are failing to comply. Fines can be up to £4,000 for repeat offenders.  

From Friday 18 September 2020, hospitality venues in England are also legally required to ensure the rule of six is followed or face a fine of up to £4,000. The rule of six regulations apply to hospitality venues including pubs, bars, cafés and restaurants.  

Information and resources  

Information for organisations.

This video explains what businesses need to do ahead of this Thursday.  

These resources can be shared by email, hosted on your website or displayed at your venue.
Introducing the app - explainer pack (PDF: 1.6MB)
NHS COVID-19 app features - overview poster (PDF: 1.9MB)
How to create a QR poster for your venue (PDF: 605KB)
Tips for displaying your QR poster in England (PDF: 1MB)
How to use QR codes to check into a venue (PDF: 653KB)
How to download the app on Android phones - guide (PDF: 2.7MB)
How to download the app on iOS iPhones - guide (PDF: 2.3MB)  

For more information about the NHS COVID-19 app, visit:  

Contact details

For further details contact
South Staffordshire District Council
Council Offices,
Wolverhampton Road,
South Staffordshire,

Tel: 01902 696000

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