The GoodSAM app

The GoodSAM app

Once you have been approved as an NHS Volunteer Responder you will need to download the GoodSAM app onto your smartphone. A link will be included in your welcome email so that you download the correct one from either the Google Play or Apple Store.

Please put yourself ‘on duty’

Once you have downloaded the GoodSAM app, please put yourself ‘on duty’ as often as you can.

However, if you’re not able to volunteer right now, you can switch your app to ‘off duty’ and re-join us when the time is right for you.

The support you provide is making a massive difference to people all across England and supporting the national effort to beat coronavirus (COVID-19).

In this section of the website, you’ll find help and guidance on downloading and using the app as well as troubleshooting information for if you run into problems.

If you cannot find an answer to any problems you might have when using the app, please ring the Support Team on 0808 196 3382 (8am to 8pm, 7 days a week).


Page last reviewed: 24 March 2021

How to download and enable settings

If you are not receiving tasks please check you have enabled 2 settings within your phone.

You will be unable to receive tasks if these are not switched on.

Watch this short video Getting started


Page last reviewed: 24 March 2021

Using the GoodSAM app

  1. Now that you have registered as a volunteer, you will need to download the GoodSAM Responder app. Downloading the app will mean you will be able to receive alerts and request for support.

  2. To do this, follow the relevant link below and download.

Download it on the Apple Store


Get it on Google Play.

The app will look like this:

  1. Open the app and sign in using your email address and the password you set up during the sign-up process. Please note – you do not need to register on the app – only sign in.

  1. You will be asked to allow location access and notifications for the app. Please allow this in order to receive alerts/requests to your phone. You can check location access is on by going to your phone settings. This may look slightly different depending on the mobile phone you are using.


Location grab from GoodSAM


Location grab GoodSAM grab

  1. Check that you have switched all notifications on under your settings. This may look different depending on the mobile phone you are using.


Notifications grab from GoodSAM


Notification grab GoodSAM app

  1. Check the settings on the app to make sure you know how to put yourself ‘on duty’.This will ensure that you are alerted when a request for support is near you. See further information below.
    On duty illustration of Good Sam App

  2. You now need to set up your profile. This is essential as it becomes your identification for the police and for the person you are supporting. Go into the app and click on the ‘ME’ tab. Tap the circle and upload your photo (this must be a photo of yourself).

    GoodSam app front screen

    Note: You must show your ID to the person you are supporting. You should do this at a safe distance.

    If the person you are supporting requires further verification, you can call their phone number.

    You can also show the individual a copy of the alert/request for support if they require further identification.

  3. When a request for support is raised you will receive an alert. You will have the option to accept or reject the alert.
    Accept/reject screengrab from the GoodSAM app
    If you know you are unable to support a request (for example, you have accidently left your device as ‘on duty’), please reject the alert – this will move to the next volunteer.

    Rejecting an alert will not prevent further requests coming through to you, if you know you are not available to support, please toggle to “OFF DUTY” as stated in the guidance above.

  4. Once you have accepted the task, the first part of the message will show what support is required (for example, Community
    Response). Ensure to check the message to see whether the person has confirmed COVID-19.

    The details will be shown through a message within the app or you can find this under the ‘comms’ section.
    Screen grab of support required form the GoodSAM app.

    Please note that some referrers may request tasks that are incorrect for the support requested. Call the isolating person and explain that you can only carry out what you have been assigned for example, Check In and Chat support.

  5. Once you have completed the task click “CONTACTED – PROVIDED HELP”. This will prevent the task being passed to another volunteer. Please note that the message/information you have on the request will disappear once “CONTACTED – PROVIDED HELP” is clicked.

    IPhone view:
    Grab from Apple devise of GoodSAM app

    Android view:
    Grab from Android devise of GoodSAM app

  6. If you make contact and find out that they do not want any support at this moment in time then press “CONTACTED – NO HELP NEEDED”. If they inform you that they no longer want any support and want to be removed then press "CLIENT WANTS TO BE REMOVED". This will alert us that the referral needs to be cancelled and allow us to monitor this activity.

    If you accept a request but then find you are unable to complete the task or are unable to support a person with confirmed COVID-19, please press "PASS TO ANOTHER VOLUNTEER".

  7. If you attempt to make contact 3 times and are unable to reach the client then press "CLIENT DID NOT ANSWER". The system will recognise if multiple volunteers have selected this button for a task and it will automatically disable the alert to prevent it from circulating to further volunteers and the task will automatically be raised to the Safeguarding Team for investigation.

    Please note: The app is used by other organisations including medical professionals – If you are only signed up as an NHS Responder Volunteer then you will NEVER receive alerts relating to any medical emergencies. This is a completely separate programme.

    If you have any concerns then please call the Support Team – 0808 196 3382


Page last reviewed: 31 March 2021

GoodSAM troubleshooting


Please watch the GoodSAM App video

My app keeps freezing?

Check you are using a phone that is compatible with the GoodSAM app either an iPhone 5 upwards or a Google compatible smartphone that allows you to download the app from the Play store.

I am having trouble receiving or accessing alerts?

  • Check you are using a phone that is compatible with the app either an iPhone 5 upwards or a Google compatible smartphone that allows you to download the app from the Play store.
  • Check that you have enabled settings to receive alerts and notifications by going to phone settings > apps > permissions and ensuring location is switched ON and that the notifications toggle is ON.
  • Check that battery saving mode is not set on your phone as this restricts location access and automatically turns it off, so the app would not be able to see your location.

Should I use the communication function on the app? I have received a message on the app from another volunteer, what does this mean?

There is a function within the app which allows you to communicate with other nearby NHS Volunteer Responders. We advise you not to use this function in the GoodSAM app. To switch this function off, please go to the settings tab and turn the “Receive Buzz” setting to ‘Off’. This field is not monitored and could potentially risk a breach of data protection guidelines.

I have changed my phone number and need to update this to get alerts?

Alerts would come via the comms area of the app and so you would still get alerts/requests if you are ON DUTY. To change your phone number please go to the GoodSAM website. Log in using your email address and password you entered whilst registering. Click 'Become a SMS Responder', then you are able to enter in the new phone number into the 'Full Mobile Number' box.

Screen grab of GoodSAM app


I get a notification but then it is not allowing me to come off the accept/reject screen?

Make sure your phone is compatible with the GoodSAM app. If it’s an Apple phone, the app is only compatible for an iPhone 5 and above. For Android, the app works with anything that Google supports, therefore if you do not have the functionality of Google Play, the app will not be able to operate on this phone. Secondly, check notifications settings by going into 'Settings' on your phone, make sure these are turned on. Then go into the GoodSAM app itself and set the notifications to ON. You could also try to re-install the app.

I was approved to volunteer but when I went into the GoodSAM app it asked for ID again, I updated this and now it is saying ‘waiting for approval’?

Rather than signing into the app it sounds like you have tried to register again which is not required. You need to click on the link that was sent to you by email when you received confirmation that your ID had been checked. Then sign in with your email address and the password you entered when you registered.

yes  no

I cannot log into the GoodSAM app as the email and password boxes are blocked by other boxes?

This sounds like there is a compatibility issue with your phone, this tends to occur on iPhones that are older than the iPhone 5 version. Please make sure you are using an iPhone 5 or above. If using an Android, check this is compatible with Google and that you have installed the app using Google play store. 

I received an alert but when I clicked on it, nothing further came up and there is nothing in the comms section. I can see the person on the map but there is no information?

Firstly, if this happens please 'Pass to another Volunteer'. Check that your location and notifications are turned to ‘ON’, both on your phone settings and within the GoodSAM app and wait for another alert.

It keeps saying my email is 'invalid as has spaces in it', but I have entered it correctly?

Sometimes when entering the email address it can place a space when you enter (.) This happens automatically, so when you enter your email address just ensure that it has not entered a space after the (.) or at the start and end of your email address. It is better to try and enter the email address manually, instead of using autofill or copy and paste which can sometimes put a space that is not required into your email.

I have tried to upload an image on my profile page but the image will not save?

Please go into your Settings > apps > responder app, then check permissions and ensure that your camera toggle and storage toggle is set to 'ON'. Also ensure that your phone is not in battery saving mode as even when these settings are on it can restrict permissions and notifications.

I have been on duty, so why have my on-duty hours not updated?

The GoodSAM app updates every time it receives a location update from your phone. If the app does not receive an update from your phone due to your settings or lack of wifi/data it will not update your on-duty hours. The number of on-duty hours is not used for any purpose and has no bearing on you receiving alerts.

My alerts are coming through silent, can I change this?

Yes, you can do this within your phone settings.  Please go into your phone settings, select notifications then ‘Responder’ and toggle to allow critical alerts.  This will ensure your alerts will come through even when your phone is on silent. Watch our video below.


If you would like to see how to do this please watch this short video.

I’m registered as a NHS Volunteer Responder but cannot remember my password. How do I reset this?

You can reset your password by visiting

Page last reviewed: 30 November 2020

Top tips for using the GoodSAM app

If you are experiencing app issues such as not being able to log on, app freezing or not
being able to receive or access alerts, try and troubleshoot by checking the below:


  • If unable to log in check that you have actually received an email that you have been approved and not just an email saying that your email has been verified. You won’t be able to log in until you have received the approval email.
  • Do not attempt to register on the GoodSAM app. As you have already registered, just sign in using the email and password you supplied when you registered.
  • Check you are using a phone that is compatible with the app either an IPhone 5 upwards or a google compatible smartphone that will allow you to download the app from Play store.
  • Check you have enabled settings to receive alerts and notifications by going to phone settings > apps > permissions and ensuring location is switched ON and ensure that notifications toggle is ON
  • Check that battery saving mode is not set to “ON” on your phone as this restricts location access and automatically turns it off, so the app would not be able to see location.


Please refer to the Volunteer FAQs for more information.


Page last reviewed: 10 November 2020