COVID Radar is available to download now, others will follow
Translated by Thomas Ansell
Yesterday evening the Minister for Health, Hugo de Jonge (CDU) and the Prime Minister Mark Rutte (VVD) appeared at a press conference about the Coronavirus outbreak in The Netherlands. “Two apps will become the basis for a new test we are trying”, said Minister De Jonge, “but we will only do this is people’s privacy is guaranteed.” As reported by the NOS.
This follows an investigation by the Outbreak Management Team (OMT) at the RIVM (the centre for public health) that suggested that mobile applications can be powerful tools in researching the current outbreak. Such apps have been used successfully in both South Korea and Singapore.
The apps are being readied to support the work of the various GGD’s across the country. People will be able to use the apps to get in contact with a doctor in their locale, if they have had contact with any infected people.
One such app has been launched by the Leiden University Medical Centre and is called COVID Radar. The app has been developed to track the spread of the infection on a more local level, and to get a better picture of those suffering: whilst the most severe cases naturally end up in hospital, most mild cases end with people getting over their symptoms whilst isolating at home.
As you might expect with something that deals with personal information, privacy has been an important factor in the design of COVID Radar. After 5 years, all data will be deleted, and information will only be shared with hospitals and research centres. You can, of course, also ask for your information to be deleted earlier if wished.