How will success of Contact Tracing App be measured? asks Isle of Wight Green Party’s Vix Lowthion

The Isle of Wight Green Party spokesperson, Vix Lowthion, has asked the Government how they will be measuring the success of the ‘test, track and trace’ programme launched on the Island this week

Do you have a temperature screen on the contact tracing App

The Isle of Wight IW Green Party is calling on the Government to share details of how they will measure the success of the Contact Tracing App, being launched on the Island this week.

In a letter to the Secretary of State for Health, and the Isle of Wight MP Bob Seely, the Isle of Wight Green Party spokesperson, Vix Lowthion, asks for the Government to share the success criteria for the second phase of the ‘test, track and trace’ programme.

Vix Lowthion said,

“The launch of the app trial on the Isle of Wight this week has created much interest both locally and nationally. The government have talked of their confidence that it will be ‘a great success on the Isle of Wight’ but have not yet shared their vision of what success will look like in a measurable way.

“Mr Hancock had great success with his target for 100,000 tests by the end of April, and I know he would also again like to set similar clear criteria for the trial on the Isle of Wight.

“I am sure that when they share their end goals for the trial, this will really help the public rally around the government’s plan.”

OnTheWight has asked the Government for details of how they will be measuring success and will update once we hear back from them.

Copy of letter to Matt Hancock and Bob Seely

Dear Mr Hancock and Mr Seely,

Thank you both for showing such a firm belief in the people of the Isle of Wight to make our contribution to the national fight against coronavirus. I am certain that they will not let you down.

I note that at the Downing Street briefing and on Radio 4, you have both spoken of your confidence that the NHSX app ‘will be a great success on the Isle of Wight’. I do not doubt your sincerity. We should be ambitious for the trial, but also be clear in what we are hoping to achieve and what success will look like so that we can judge when it has arrived. Mr Hancock had great success with his target for 100,000 tests by the end of April, and I know he would also again like to set similar clear criteria for the trial on the Isle of Wight.

Please could you identify what the success criteria are for this trial, as I am sure that this would really help the public rally around the government’s plan a lot more.

  1. Is success going to be measured by the number of Islanders who will install and run the app? How many people are you hoping for? I note Mr Seely talks about 20% of the population being statistically useful and 50% of more medical use. Could we be given a target so we know whether the trial has been a success?
  2. Is success measured through whether the app functions effectively? Is the trial to check that there are no glitches or bugs, that the Bluetooth low energy is user friendly, and that the public find it a good application to have installed. If so, how will this be measured? Will there be a survey for islanders to complete and will the results of this be published?
  3. Is success going to be measured by a reduced number of positive tests on the Isle of Wight? As Mr Seely has put it on Sky News, a ‘reduction in the R curve’ ie to slow the spread of the virus? If so, how will this be measured and published, and will there be greater access to coronavirus tests on the Isle of Wight for everyone who has installed the app on their device?
  4. Is success going to be measured by a reduced number of deaths on the Isle of Wight? If so, over what time period will this trial be continuing? And will there be a concerted effort to ensure that people particularly in care homes install and use the app?
  5. Are there other success criteria that you are considering and wish to share, such as amount of data produced by the app or adherence to lockdown regulations?

I know you both appreciate that clarity of purpose and intent is critical when leading the public through a crisis period.

Thank you for your time and I look forward to receiving your response as soon as possible,

Vix Lowthion
Spokesperson, Isle of Wight Green Party

Tuesday, 5th May, 2020 4:45pm



Filed under: Health, Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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35 Comments on "How will success of Contact Tracing App be measured? asks Isle of Wight Green Party’s Vix Lowthion"

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Mark L Francis

I think Hancock achieved the “100k” target by double counting. Some kits went out and some came in but they were all lumped together to make the target, which is why t has subsequently gone down again.
Who else saw that coming?

Steve Goodman

We know Hancock did not achieve the claimed target; the conman counting included, for example, simply putting into the postal system about 40,000 kits, as rather more reliably reported this morning on BBC Radio 4’s ‘More or Less’.

Steve Goodman
For further confirmation of this example of unhelpful fibs/ spin/ bs from government, bad enough at the best of times but now even more annoying, embarrassing, and possibly lethal when pandemic response requires public trust in the people in power: the lead page of the latest Private Eye (1521), the front page of today’s Guardian, and presumably other places I’m less familiar with. Good luck. (And a… Read more »
The main advantage of using the app is the ability to report symptoms and be able to get tested. The general population have not been eligible for tests before. This should enable the government to get a better picture of the infection rate as only the more serious cases appear in the figures. Let’s hope they have the capability to get the test kits out and analysed… Read more »
I have no political axe to grind but consider all five points in Vix Lowthian’s letter valid and reasonable. She puts in quotes Bob Seely’s reference to the R curve. So far as I’m aware this has never been expressed as a curve but only as number and the essential thing is that this number remains below 1. The further below 1 the better. You may think… Read more »
Vix Lowthion

Thank you. Yes my quotes are intentional – quoted by Bob Seely on SkyNews on Sunday around 1min in

Rhos yr Alarch

Very good points, I think. The other day Bob Seely also appeared to say the aim was for 50% of smartphone users do download the app. This was puzzling as all other publicity said this needed to be 50% of the overall local population…


“How will success of Contact Tracing App be measured?”
Answer – They will lie, in the same way Twott HandCock lied about 80% wanted the App.

Angela Hewitt

Walkingwizard? Vix Lothion is no more a useless woman than all the useless men running this debacle of an operation. New Zealand is run by an amazing woman by the way so is Germany. Let’s hope the arrogant men can catch up!!

Germany is very good at hiding deaths, they had years of experience; also managed very successfully to hide the cooking of the emissions on their Volkswagens so their truthfulness is more than suspect. New Zealand has a population of 4 millions 676 thousand, even smaller than Scotland. The UK has a population of the order of 66 Million; you should try making meaningful comparisons. And NZ is… Read more »
Rhos yr Alarch

And the IW already has 50% more recorded deaths than the whole of New Zealand? By the way, Ireland has done pretty well despite having a so-called arrrogant man at-the-helm…


If Kim Yo-Jong takes over from her brother, will that be a positive or a negative?


from the article wellesley posted.
“Government’s incompetence on digital privacy issues, that our Digital Minister’s app steals a bank of users’ personal photographs, even when permission to access them is denied.” “

“30,000 people had downloaded the app” Do you believe Mr Seely this morning, is this how the success is measured ? Google Play 4pm – 5,000+ downloads , no number available for I Phone (did get 2 reviews though) Does he mean downloads or unique users/phones ? (bit like CP likes to boast of their page views rather than unique visitors) Quite a few in the IW… Read more »

PS Google play numbers would say 10,000+ or 15,000+ etc if more downloads. The review function is off for some reason

Vix Lowthion
UPDATE 3 days have passed and still no response from Secretary of State or MP on the important details regarding the clear objective of this trial (but MP finds the time to call island Labour and LibDems to ask them to join his team). We need an app which is safe and secure and works. The success of the efforts which so many islanders are putting in… Read more »

Why are we giving this useless woman air time? She has said that we should not have the App as old people do not either have phones or the skill to use them. She appears to want the older generation to stay isolated forever away from their family.

Vix Lowthion
Accuracy and clarity are really important. As is kindness. I have never told people they shouldn’t have the App, but neither can I recommend people download something which serious tech and security experts have qualms about. Neither have I said ‘old people don’t have phones’. Statistically over 65+years only 40% have a smart phone in comparison to 91% of 20-30 year olds. I haven’t seen my own… Read more »
But in a few short hours on Tuesday evening, your twitter feed was a hotbed of retweeted negativity, including one that said, quite clearly; “Right now, there’s only one responsible message about the app right now: don’t download it.” You were first on South Today complaining something about the Island residents, “not being asked”. I am personally keen to do what I can to protect others, should… Read more »
Vix Lowthion

I don’t know what specific Twitter posts you are referring to, but I have never said people should not download the app – on Twitter, TV, Radio, wherever. That may have been someone else whilst sharing info. I’ll go check.

Vix Lowthion

Ah I found it! I retweeted it and said “I want an app which is Better
– and to get a better app we need government to listen to our experiences on the Isle of Wight.” with that other message underneath. I wasn’t agreeing with the post underneath – I was disagreeing! Sorry if that wasn’t clear.


Dear Greenie, you stick to doing what suits your circumstances and the rest of us will do what we see fit. You only ever appear to criticise this Government,


It’s constructive criticism and justified based on the Governments response for example they did not recognise the seriousness of the virus and as such were too slow to plan, to test and ensure there was enough human resources and PPE.


Are you able to provide data to support that statistic? I don’t know anyone in my social circle of pensioners who does not have a smart phone. Indeed that is how many of us communicate with our families. It is very important to support statistical claims with data.


Talk to people at the sharp end, I have also worked within the sectors so have seen it myself how underfunded it has been for years, key workers in tears as they haven’t got the right human resources or equipment this pandemic has exposed the reality. Statistics of course can be manipulated, the reality is you have to humanise them.


Very well articulated


wizards are “particularly skilful at a certain activity”
what is your speciality ?

Do you really believe this App will allow the over 70’s to do anything different than they are doing now i.e. staying home and keeping safe. Going out now is a risk as some here have already ‘unlocked’ themselves as it’s noticeably much busier in the shops and on the roads. Seely and Stewart are a disgrace they don’t give a stuff about the safety of residents… Read more »

I find the selfishness of some people disappointing. I would love to know if I have the virus. Not for my own sake as it will be to late, however I will double my vigilance in avoiding to transmit it. Sleeping in a tent to avoid spreading it if need be. If using the app saves just 1 life it has to be worth it


Dear Sculler, unfortunately the app will not be able to tell you whether you are infected, only a test will. As long as tests and regular re-tests are not carried out Island- (and nation-) wide, this is a totally pointless exercise.


Totally agree, I’ve been banging on about this since since the exercise was announced (and before).


Sorry but this app is definitely not a get out of jail card.


Don’t agree she’s the only one taking an objective and sensible approach to this controversial issue.