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Using the app

This page was updated on October 19 2021. Please update the Covid check app to the latest version to ensure a consistent experience with the guidance below.

Step 1

Staff will need to download and install the NHS Scotland COVID Check app on a mobile device.

The app is available from either the Apple App Store (for iOS Apple devices) or Google Play (for Android devices).

The NHS Scotland COVID Check app works both in offline and online mode, both with or without Wi-Fi.

Please note, the app will need periodic access to the internet to download updates to the security mechanism used to decode the QR codes presented to it. It is recommended you do this every 24 hours or you may find valid QR codes fail to scan successfully.

Step 2

Open the app by clicking on the purple NHS Scotland COVID Check app logo.

The first time the user uses the Check app they are asked to provide consent, by clicking "I agree".

The app will not function if user agreement is not obtained.

This is the landing page in the app.

Click on "Check a 2D barcode". A two-dimensional (2D) barcode (QR code) looks like squares or rectangles that contain many small, individual shapes, see sample below.

When opening the app for the first time, please click "OK" to allow it to have permission to use the camera.

The screen shot above is from an Android phone. A similar screen and permission request will display on an IOS (Apple) phone.

Step 3

Scan the NHS Scotland COVID Pass of your customer.

Your customer will show their NHS Scotland COVID Pass. This will be on a smartphone, tablet or printed off as a paper PDF. Point your device's camera at the QR code displayed on the customer's printed PDF, or at the QR code displayed on their smartphone.

Scanning a SD barcode with an Apple phone

Note: The COVID Check app can scan the NHS Scotland COVID Pass via a mobile or tablet or where someone has a genuine NHS Scotland letter.

Once the scanner has been pointed at a QR code, it automatically starts scanning the code.

Read results from a QR code

Records found

If a QR code is scanned and there are records found in the QR code, the data held within the QR code is displayed, for example:

  • name
  • date of expiry of the QR code
  • a green tick to indicate that the customer is fully vaccinated and 14 full days have passed since the date of their last vaccination

Valid Pass

Status invalid

If the screen displays a 'status invalid' message, the QR code has been scanned but either the customer is not fully vaccinated or a full 14 days have not yet passed since their last vaccination.

Not recognised

If this screen is displayed saying "2D barcode not recognised", this may be because the scanned barcode is an incorrect code, or a section of a valid code has been obscured. Press "Hold to pause". This pauses the screen with the result for approximately 3 seconds. You should see the screen where you can scan the barcode.


If the COVID-19 status has expired, this is displayed on this screen. 

Help stop the virus. Download the app today.

By using the NHS Scotland COVID Check app, alongside existing public health and contact tracing measures, you can help to stop the spread of the virus in Scotland.

If we all play our part, we can all help protect ourselves, our families and Scotland against coronavirus.

screenshot of app logged in