World Health Organization to launch coronavirus symptom checking app

WHO to launch COVID-19 app for countries that need one

WHO to launch COVID-19 app for countries that need one

According to a report by Reuters, the World Health Organization coronavirus app will work as a "symptom checker".

Reuters reported Saturday that the World Health Organization is developing an app that will guide users (particularly those in countries with limited resources) through symptoms to help them figure out if they have the disease caused by the coronavirus or not.

The app logs the contact, encrypts it, and notifies the user if they have had close contact with another user who has tested positive - and chosen to update their status on the app of course - giving them advice to self-isolate.

A version of the unnamed program is expected to launch globally this month; governments are also encouraged to access the API and release a more personalized version for local constituents. The underlying technology canused by any country to create their own models for the app. Engineers and technicians including former Google and Microsoft workers are on duty to create the app.

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"The value is really for countries that do not have anything", Mariano said as quoted by Reuters. "We would be leaving behind the ones that are not able to (provide an app), that have fragile health systems".

The app will also be open source and made available on GitHub, so anyone can examine the code and create their own version of the app.

In a crisis reminiscent of the infamous Irish border Brexit debate, Northern Irish residents may be asked to download both the UK's NHS contact-tracing app and an app being developed south of the border. Besides, the app could inform the people about the virus and lead them for more testing. The organisation has talked to Apple and Google about adopting their joint method. Australia, France, the United Kingdom, and the USA have already introduced COVID-19 tracing apps, which use Bluetooth to perform a "digital handshake" between smartphone owners. One such concern is that the businesses that make proximity tools will use the personal data they gather to make money later on, Mariano said. The WHO is reportedly considering whether or not to implement Bluetooth-based contact tracing, a technology for tracking which other people someone has come into contact with.

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