Love Island stars have been pictured jetting off to sun-soaked locations months after taking taxpayers’ cash to promote NHS Test and Trace – as a top health chief warned earlier this week that the system isn’t working.
While millions of Britons live under stay-at-home orders, influencers such as Shaughna Phillips and Josh Denzel have both shared snaps of themselves in exotic locations.
Phillips shared a picture of herself in Dubai on Monday, while Denzel has posted a number of snaps of himself in Barbados over the last fortnight.
Shaughna Phillips shared a picture of herself in Dubai on Monday – after promoting the NHS Test and Trace system
The pair were both paid to promote the NHS Test and Trace service earlier this year to their combined 2.7million Instagram following.
Now, amid growing concern over the strain on the NHS due to Covid, medics and politicians have slammed influencers for rubbing their glamorous life-styles ‘in the noses of the British public’.
The criticism also comes as health chiefs say the Test and Trace service which influencers were paid to promote is ‘not working effectively and needs to be fixed’.
Phillips, a former local council worker, posted a throwback picture of her and friends on a night out as part the promotion campaign.
In the post, the Love Island star, who shared a picture of herself posed-up in a bright orange swimsuit in Dubai, urged her 1.5million followers to get a test on the NHS.
The post said: ‘A throwback to what I love most! Nights out and good friends!
‘Although this may feel like a distant memory to us all, we can all do our part to make sure we can get back to better times, as safely as possible.
‘Guys I want to remind you about the importance of coronavirus testing and that it’s totally free, quick and is vital to stop the spread of coronavirus.
‘Getting tested for coronavirus is the best way for us all to get back to doing the things we love and I love nothing more than spending time with my friends.
‘Yesterday I visited my nearest drive though testing centre, which is literally 2 minutes from my house! I was able to book a test online, and have it carried out all under 1 hour, it was so convenient!’
She continued: ‘When I woke up this morning I had already received my results by text and email! I’ve also checked the Royal Mail website to see where my nearest priority postbox is, as well as the stickers I need to look out for on the postbox itself.
‘This will help me in the future if I need to carry out a home test kit. Everyone with symptoms, no matter how mild, can get a free test by calling 119 or visiting NHS.uk. #letsgetback #gettested #ad.’
Both Denzel and Phillips are among a flurry of influencers who have posted pictures of themselves in exotic locations in recent weeks, while Britons remain locked down at home.
Although the influencers are not breaking the law, their trips have raised eyebrows.
Labour blasted the influencers saying they should stop rubbing their life-styles in the noses of the British public.
Shadow Health Minister Justin Madders also demanded the reality stars help promote the vaccination programme free of charge.
He blasted: ‘Not only do images of the rich jetting off to holiday hotspots rub the noses in it of everyone who is making enormous sacrifices to comply with the latest lockdown back in the UK, but it sends out a wholly contradictory message to the stay at home requests of the Government.
‘These people should instead be offering to get behind the Government’s vaccination plans and supporting that on social media, free of charge.’
Frontline workers have also been left furious that while they are pulling 12-hours shifts, the Insta-famous are jetting abroad.
Nurse Holly Turner said: ‘What we can all see is the pressure that our NHS has been under from people not following health advice.
‘When I’m out there struggling to do my job, and the families I work with are pleading for support that they can’t have due to this lockdown, it’s pretty disgusting to see the attitude that influencers and clothing brands have taken.
‘Covid-19 has shown us how inter-related our health is. Nurse, child or fashion influencer, we all need to do our part.’