Israeli geeks have developed a new app in partnership with United Hatzalah of Israel that lets the user know if she or he has been exposed to someone diagnosed with the COVID-19 novel coronavirus.
The new Track Virus app is already available for download by Android users, and will shortly be available for iPhones as well, according to the developers. It tracks the location of the users from the time it is downloaded.
The information is kept anonymously on each smartphone and is not uploaded to the cloud. Downloading does not require any form of identification or information gathering.
The app works by crosschecking a person’s path with the paths of confirmed patients of the coronavirus as listed by the Health Ministry. Should a person have been in a location where a confirmed ill person was they will receive a notification on their app.
It is important to note that the application only works from the time it is downloaded and not retroactively. Therefore it is important to download it immediately.
Vice President of Operations of United Hatzalah of Israel Dov Maisel explained, “As the number of coronavirus patients rises the harder it becomes for the public to keep track of all the different places that they have all been and the updates from the Health Ministry.
“Additionally, people often have a hard time recalling exactly where they have been and when. The app solves both of these problems.
“The app is updated in real-time whenever the Health Ministry issues notification regarding the whereabouts of a person confirmed to be a carrier of the virus. It crosschecks all of the paths of the diagnosed patients with the whereabouts of the user.
“If the user has been to any of the locations identified by the Health Ministry, then the user will receive a specialized notification from the app. The user will then know that they are in danger of being exposed to the virus and can act accordingly.”
The creator of Track Virus, Uri Feldman added, “We are very excited that a large organization such as United Hatzalah has partnered with us in tracking and hopefully stopping the spread of the Coronavirus by using advanced smartphone technology.
“Starting on Sunday, tens of thousands of users will receive the necessary information regarding the whereabouts of confirmed Coronavrus carriers faster, in a more up-to-date manner and with more accuracy.”