Health bosses said the NHS is working with its industry partners to make sure everyone can get NHS information and advice that is verified, up to date and free from misinformation, without using up their data allowance or mobile credit.
In response to the coronavirus outbreak, people with mild symptoms are being encouraged to visit nhs.uk/coronavirus for advice, and to avoid the illness by washing their hands more often and for at least 20 seconds with water and soap.
Health bodies and the government are encouraging people to self-isolate if they experience symptoms of the virus, most commonly a high temperature or a new continuous cough.
Matt Hancock, secretary of state for Health and Social Care, said: ‘In the face of the continued spread of coronavirus, it is vital everybody can access the latest verified public health advice on the NHS website when they need to, so everyone knows exactly what they should be doing to keep themselves and others safe.
‘We have been clear this must be a national effort and so I’m delighted that mobile companies will be offering free data to browse nhs.uk.
‘This will ensure everyone can access the guidance they need and avoid dangerous misinformation, without incurring data charges, and is an important contribution to the next stage of our plan to delay the spread of the virus.’
Matthew Gould, chief executive of NHSX, said: ‘This is a helpful step by the mobile firms to give everyone free access to the latest NHS information online.
‘It will help spread NHS guidance, and tackle online misinformation. Getting the public verified NHS information will help cut through the noise and help people get expert, safe advice.’
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