7 May 2021
  

Importance Of Tech In Detecting And Recovering From COVID-19

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Surbhi Bhatia

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Technology in COVID-19

My 14-Day COVID Journey

Initially, when the COVID-19 outbreak happened, moving outside got refrained. With a bit of knowledge and information for the first few months, I successfully survived the year without getting in any trouble. Sure, I realized that the times are difficult and the disease is like a ghost, haunting more than about 220 countries, but I never in my nightmares imagined that I’d become a victim of it.

There I was, looking at my COVID-positive reports. My hands shivering as I held my phone, which had the mobile app for the lab opened, flashing ‘POSITIVE’ in bold. What do I do now? Who do I consult? These were the first two questions that popped into my mind, due to living alone in a different state, away from my family. 

Fortunately, I recovered in about 12-14 days, and technology has played a tremendous role during the same in keeping me informed, entertained, diverted, and whatnot! 

How? Keep reading to know! 

It all started when I felt feverish and decided to get tested for COVID-19. Fever and body ache being the initial symptoms, I had to quarantine myself from the outside world in order to not infect any other individual. The reports took about 2-3 days. Luckily, the process of booking the test to receiving reports, everything happened online, at a much more convenience than visiting the hospital and standing in long queues. 

Until the reports came in, I consulted the doctor online, who prescribed me a few medicines to keep my fever down. At first, everything seemed casual as changing weather is an enemy when it comes to health. The anxiety kicked in as soon as I received an email from the laboratory. Collecting my courage, I downloaded the mobile application, and there were the reports. 

What next? My days became long and nights even longer. I had to take a medical leave from my office due to the weakness and poor mental state of doing any work. Having another appointment via an on-demand healthcare app, the doctor examined my situation and gave me all the instructions to defeat the virus by treating it at home. While all of this was happening, video calling and OTT platforms became my best friends. I would binge-watch shows, or my family and friends video called me to keep a check. 

During these challenging days, I tried to gain as much information as possible about how different countries are managing to overcome the situation. Not only this, but I came across a lot of information on the application of digital technologies in pandemic management, pandemic planning, surveillance, testing, healthcare, and more. 

If you’re a tech junkie just like me, this might have intrigued you to know more about the framework and mechanism of technology during these tough times. It intrigued me as well, which is why I landed on different websites and pages, willing to learn more. 

What you’re going to read next is a pool of information regarding numerous tech trends contributing towards planning, tracking, screening, and tracing the infection. 

Planning and tracking

Artificial Intelligence

Several countries adopted the functioning of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Big Data to track people and the spread of infection. One of the biggest examples is China, as the country collected real-time data on the location of people, emphasizing the pandemic’s epicenter. 

Additionally, a US-based healthcare organization built a platform for healthcare workers to keep track of COVID-19 patients, staffing, ventilator usage, and more information. 

Screening 

Screening

China started using the web and cloud-based tools for screening and directing people to appropriate resources. Not only this, but countries like Singapore started screening contactless temperature of people at workplaces, schools, etc. Doing this identified the hot spots of the virus to initiate testing. 

What’s more? Iceland started using mobile technology to collect data on asymptomatic individuals. 

Tracing

Tracing

South Korea initiated contact tracing to track an individual’s travel history by collecting data from bank card records, facial recognition tech, GPS from phones and vehicles, etc. Moreover, people living in hot spot regions received alerts regarding the cases and their contact with infected people. 

Germany launched a mobile application that records an individual’s temperature, pulse, and sleep pattern to screen the signs of infection. 

Mentioned above are just a few initiatives taken by the countries to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus. However, there is a lot more that is being done by the authorities to track, screen, and manage the condition. 

In my case, mobile meditation applications also helped me get through the hard time as suggested by the health professional. Not only this, but it is suggested that to maintain mental peace, patients must follow a regular exercising pattern. 

Without any guidance? You ask? 

Well, the guidance is right at your arm’s length- YOUR SMARTPHONE! 

Conclusion

The incorporation of digital tech to track the ongoing situation has helped various countries like Israel to flatten the COVID-19 curve. As per reports, countries that instantly deployed technologies to facilitate planning, testing, clinical management, etc., are efficiently managing the outbreak. However, there’s still a surge of cases in countries lacking proper infrastructure and tech. 

To sum up, all I want to say is getting through the 14-days period can be harsh as you sit all along in a room while no chords with the outside world. It’s amazing to see tech play such a crucial role in the pandemic management; however, there’s still a long way to go.

Want to save yourself all the trouble? 

WEAR YOUR MASK AND STAY SAFE !

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