This Is How Karnataka Is Using Technology To Tackle The Coronavirus Outbreak 

by Swarajya Staff - Apr 1, 2020 06:41 PM +05:30 IST
This Is How Karnataka Is Using Technology To Tackle The Coronavirus Outbreak Karnataka (Swarajya Graphic)
  • Corona Watch — an app developed by IAS officer Munish Moudgil and his team at the Covid War Room — requires those on home quarantine to upload selfies every hour, which is monitored by the war room.

Even as the number of Corona cases in Karnataka rose to 105 with Bengaluru urban and Mysuru listed among the top seven affected cities in the country, and contact tracing seems to be turning into a nightmare with recent cases of cluster transmissions, governments are turning to technology to track, monitor and tele advise citizens.

Karnataka’s special task force that was formed last week to tackle the Covid outbreak in the state launched an app called Corona Watch to provide citizens real time information about the virus and its dealing. The app shows the locations of Corona affected patients and their movement history of 14 days.

The app requires those on home quarantine to upload selfies every hour, which is monitored by the Corona Virus war room. The app has to be mandatorily downloaded and kept active 24*7 by all those who have been home quarantined.

“If they don't follow it, then they will be brought to mass quarantine," said Secretary of the war room Munish Moudgil, as quoted.

These images with GPS coordinates will also ensure the location tracking of the person. The app though ran into an issue yesterday with Google not taking the updated version of the app citing ‘non-payment’.

The app can be used by the general public to identify the movement of quarantined people in their area and in case found loitering can call the helpline numbers and inform the war room.

It also provides information about the nearest hospitals that people can access for both testing and treatment.

The government also roped in doctors from the ESI Directorate to respond to queries frmo citizens on Telegram.

The group, ‘COVID-19 Karnataka: Sahaya Group’ is reportedly the largest telegram group in the country and has 21,000 people and counting, who get their doubts about Corona clarified by trained medical professionals.

The state has also launched an online training programme for doctors to treat Corona affected patients. This programme, which is said to train around 25,000 medical and health personnel, is said to be the first of its kind in the country. It will provide information regarding diagnosis, infection control in hospitals, protocols to be followed as well as clinical case management.

The task force is also using tower location data from service providers and will notify people who may have come in contact with corona positive persons based on the location.

“ We will notify them saying — ‘you were in the vicinity of Mr Y who is now a corona positive patient. Please report for a quarantine,” said Moudgil as quoted.

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