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Indian app to help citizens monitor health during COVID-19

Image credit: SetuAarogya; Twitter

In the fight against COVID-19, the Indian government has launched a mobile application called Aarogya Setu.

The Aarogya Setu app was developed by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). It enables people to assess their health and the risk of catching COVID-19.

A press release has claimed that it will calculate this based on their interaction with others, using cutting-edge Bluetooth technology, algorithms, and artificial intelligence.

The government has urged its citizens to download the mobile application, which is designed to keep the user informed, in case they cross paths with someone who has tested positive.

The user, after installing the Aarogya Setu app, is asked to answer a number of questions. In case some of the answers suggest COVID-19 symptoms, the information will be sent to a government server.

The data will then help the government take effective steps and initiate the isolation procedure if necessary. It also alerts the user if they come in close proximity with a person who has tested positive.

The app is available on both Android and iOS. It is available in 11 languages-ten Indian languages and English.

Aarogya Setu Interactive Voice Response System 

To include citizens with only feature phones and landlines, under the protection of Aarogya Setu, the “Aarogya Setu Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS)” has been implemented.

This service is available across the country. It is toll-free and citizens are asked to give a missed call to a number (1921) and they will get a call back requesting for inputs regarding their health.

The questions asked are aligned with Aarogya Setu App, and based on the responses given. Users will also get an SMS indicating their health status and also will get further alerts for their health moving forward.

The service is implemented in 11 regional languages, similar to the mobile application. The input provided by the citizen will be made part of Aarogya Setu database and information is processed to send alerts to the citizen on the action to be taken to ensure their safety.

The release mentioned its website for authentic and updated information on COVID-19-related technical issues, guidelines, and advisories.

A city in India launched another app last month. To track home-quarantined citizens and ensure they are staying at home, the Saiyam app was developed by the Pune Municipal Corporation.

As OpenGov reported, the city administration has appointed dedicated teams for five zones to conduct a follow-up with people under home quarantine on a daily basis.

The teams will check on people who have recently returned from international trips and those discharged after treatment for COVID-19.

Accordingly, the teams will seek updates from quarantined people on their health status and details of persons in contact with them. For persons sporting the home quarantine stamp, the teams will check if separate food, bed, utensils, clothes and washrooms are provided to them.

The teams will check if those under home quarantine have downloaded the Saiyam Mobile application. The mobile application has GPS tracking so that whenever quarantined citizens leave their homes, the administration is alerted and the local ward or the local police station is informed, who then visit the family.

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