back to article Test and Trace chief Dido Harding prompted to self-isolate by NHS COVID-19 app

There's nothing quite like eating your own dog food, as Test and Trace chief Baroness Dido Harding has learned after being instructed to self-isolate by the NHS COVID-19 contact-tracing app overnight. In a tweet this morning, Harding said she was feeling well, and that there's "nothing like personal experience of your own …

  1. macjules Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Nothing like personal experience of your own products

    Now publish all your personal data online so that you can experience what it is like to be a TalkTalk customer.

    1. Lotaresco

      Re: Nothing like personal experience of your own products

      "Now publish all your personal data online so that you can experience what it is like to be a TalkTalk customer."

      I was very tempted to Tweet that in response to her Tweet around 08:30 today. However I decided to stand back and avoid getting crushed in the stampede. Although AFAICS you're the only other person with a mind running on the same wonky rails as mine.

  2. Pete B
    Black Helicopters

    I have my doubts about the anonymity

    Sure this is some dev's attempt to keep her out of the office!

    1. DJV Silver badge

      Re: I have my doubts about the anonymity

      Hopefully, he's figured out how to reset her isolation day count back to 14 whenever it reaches 1 or 2.

  3. David Gosnell

    Only advisory

    Of course, the app is only advisory, unlike any call you get from an actual human successfully able to feign being from the government. But I guess she has no practical choice having staked recovering her reputation on this crock.

    1. Andy The Hat Silver badge

      Re: Only advisory

      In fact, in at least one workplace I know of, it is a formal disciplinary if you isolate when told to do so only by the app ... That includes if you are a teacher and an entire class has to isolate with multiple positive cases, the excuse being "our rules are that teachers social distance at all times" ... I still don't understand why cases are rising :-(

    2. Aladdin Sane Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Only advisory

      But as we all know, advisory is the will of the people and must be implemented with no heed to how fucking shite it all is.

      I may have gone off on a tangent.

  4. wolfetone Silver badge

    Can she self isolate permanently?

    1. Lotaresco
      Devil

      "Can she self isolate permanently?"

      In my darker moments I find myself wishing that she would isolate herself from oxygen. Is there anyone currently in government more incompetent? Other than Grayling, that is.

      1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge
        Gimp

        Dildo is currently only fucking up one thing. Bojo is a far stronger contender for that particular crown.

      2. chivo243 Silver badge
        Facepalm

        I didn't know there was oxygen way up there where the Dido's live...

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Is that somewhere over the rainbow or through the looking glass?

      3. Oh Matron!

        I'm sure The reg has a limit on comment size... The list is endless....

  5. Mike 125

    oh dear...

    "Nothing like personal experience of your own products "

    The implication being that's your first experience of it?

    Way to go client-centred app design- that's nothing like it.

    1. Jimmy2Cows Silver badge

      Re: oh dear...

      Frankly I'm surprised she actually installed it. Expected the more typical case of one rule for them, another for us.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: oh dear...

        Her hubby was already self-isolation. Can't remember if it was app related or contact tracer related though. Anyone interested can check the news for the last week or so. But if he was already isolating and she wasn't that does make one wonder if they still live together or not. Or maybe he got a positive test and that's why her app pinged. On the other hand, if hubby was the cause of her ping, she should already have been isolating with him.

  6. Ol'Peculier
    Pint

    Suggestion...

    If any NHS developers read this, can you increase her isolation period for a bit? Maybe change the datepart from days to decades perhaps?

    ---> because one day the pubs will be back

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Suggestion...

      There will be many NHS developers reading this, but the Dido app isn't NHS.

      It was entirely built and rolled out by Serco and the usual bunch of companies run by Tory ministers and their families. The only thing NHS about this semi-functional farrago is the blue rectangular logo that was slapped on it at the last minute.

      Not our circus, not our monkeys.

      AC for obvious reasons!

      1. David Gosnell

        Re: Suggestion...

        Not Serco though; this is a popular myth now widely debunked. I believe they have a lot to do with the manual tracing programme but not the app, which is completely separately operated (to the chagrin of the government).

        Officially, the following were involved with the app:

        Accenture, Alan Turing Institute, NHS Digital, NHSx, Oxford University, VMware Pivotal Lab and Zuhlke Engineering, plus the National Cyber Security Centre.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Suggestion...

          Not Serco though; this is a popular myth now widely debunked.

          The fact remains, though, it's only NHS branding - if I weren't such a cynical son-of-a-bitch I'd say that it was done so that when it eventually collapses in a heap, Spaffer and his chums can point the finger and say 'look, the NHS isn't fit for purpose'

          Sad thing is, the proles have fallen for it.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Suggestion...

            @Simon Ward

            As a "Prole" I fell for it. And glad I did. I got pinged. Went for test the day after that was positive. I wonder how many people I would have passed it onto if it was not got that app?

            Cheers…. Ishy

          2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
            Thumb Down

            Re: Suggestion...

            "The fact remains, though, it's only NHS branding"

            And yet both NHS Digital and NHSx where involved in the development.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Suggestion...

              by involved, they mean, they got to look at it.

              someone in NHSD looked at it, but the rest of the organisation didnt get a say, and i doubt the CSOC got a look.

              NHSX is not NHS its a DHSC quango esigned to look flashy and take all the money for Digital transformation and spend it on consultants, rather than make it available for real improvement. Befor they came along, NHSD werwe making in roads in transforming the front line, and basically NHSx are re-doing all there work and getting in the way.

  7. Strahd Ivarius Silver badge

    So she has been contaminated?

    If I understand properly the rules, if she has to stay isolated for 9 days more it means that she has symptoms at a minimum.

    And anybody in contact with her before should isolate also for 14 days?

    1. Solviva

      Re: So she has been contaminated?

      The 14 days starts from when you last had contact with the diseased humanoid, so the diseased gets their test back a couple of days later and then Dido gets her notification, thus time served is deducted from 14 days.

      Incidentally, is there any punishment for feigning symptoms so you only need 10 days rather than 14 assuming you had more than 10 days left to sever?

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: So she has been contaminated?

        "Incidentally, is there any punishment for feigning symptoms so you only need 10 days rather than 14 assuming you had more than 10 days left to sever?"

        If your app pings, it indicates 14 days. If you tell your app you got a positive test by entering your result code, it indicates 10 days. Not sure if that would change if you get a 14 day notification and then enter a positive result code during the first 2-3 days.

  8. Danny 2 Silver badge

    Fun phone call

    Hello boss? You can't come in to work today, you're sick.

    1. DJV Silver badge

      Re: Fun phone call

      Hello boss? You can't come in to work today, you're sick.

      FTFY

  9. Inventor of the Marmite Laser

    Can Ms Dodo please be quarantined on another planet? She's there mentally but physical relocation would be nice. One way physical relocation, that is.

  10. DavCrav Silver badge

    "Threatens plenty of Zoom sessions in the days ahead... just as well they've updated security in recent weeks"

    Encryption would only be important if anything she said or did was of value.

  11. Zog_but_not_the_first
    Devil

    A great pity...

    That she, the rest of the crony businesses who have profiteered out of Covid 19, and the shambolic heap of dung that masquerades as the Government couldn't self isolate too.

    In a black hole.

  12. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Plenty more dog food needed

    Is it too much to hope that as soon as this period of self-isolation ends (both for her and the PM) that another contact leads to another self-isolation period?

    It looks as if this would be the only thing to prompt the realisation that rather than blind self-isolation the better option would be to require the subject to get tested and then isolate or not based on the result.

    The app is a presumptive test with a possibility* of giving a false positive. The correct response to a positive presumptive test is to follow up with a definitive test.

    * Have they any estimate of the probability that? If so we should be told what it it. If not they should at least make an effort to find out.

    1. Dave_uk

      Re: Plenty more dog food needed

      Dido: "what do you mean! The probability was checked thoroughly and each time it confirmed we would be paid without delay. Anyone for caviar dears."

  13. Dave_uk
    WTF?

    Cheap as chips this track and trace

    Boris has received a txt to self isolate, "now so have I", says the waster Dido I-lost-all-talktalk-customer-data-to-hackers Harding.

    "This track and trace I made is absolutely FAB".

    Well peasants that cost us all £12Billion to txt two of the virus! Just for publicity....?

  14. CliveS
    WTF?

    So on the 10th November, John Penrose MP, husband of Dido Harding was told to self-isolate. Yet Dido was only informed by her app 5 days after she was in contact with someone (14 days self isolation, 9 days left when notified). So presumably hubby wasn't the contact. Good illustration of how weak "her" system is, that she can wander around for 5 days as a potential "spreader".

    1. smudge
      Facepalm

      So on the 10th November, John Penrose MP, husband of Dido Harding was told to self-isolate. Yet Dido was only informed by her app 5 days after she was in contact with someone (14 days self isolation, 9 days left when notified). So presumably hubby wasn't the contact. Good illustration of how weak "her" system is, that she can wander around for 5 days as a potential "spreader".

      Penrose was told to isolate because he had been in contact with some who had had a postive test. Penrose himself has not had a positive test.

      People who live with those who are self-isolating but who haven't had a positive test don't have to self-isolate. Therefore Dido didn't have to self-isolate just because her husband was.

      She herself has subsequently come into contact with someone who has now had a positive test. So now she has to self-isolate.

      Those are the rules, and I am sure that they were laid down by the Government's medical advisers, and not by her.

      If every contact of someone self-isolating had to self-isolate, there would be no staff in hospitals or schools.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "If every contact of someone self-isolating had to self-isolate, there would be no staff in hospitals or schools."

        And that's why every contact should be told to test and then self-isolate or not based on that.

  15. Commswonk

    WHY

    ...do I find myself sympathising with the virus in this case?

    Stuck with only Dido for company...

  16. TRT Silver badge

    One wonders how much she's benefitted from this COVID business...

    I mean there's also that hand soap business that her and that there Trevor Bayliss started. ;)

  17. D.A.

    I’m sure it’s only a bug.

    I’ll get my coat.

  18. redpola

    It’s “SERCO Test and Trace”, not “NHS Test and Trace”.

  19. BebopWeBop Silver badge

    I would be amused if somewhere in there there was not a test 'Is this Harding's phone?' -> Isolate asap.

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