Critical event management specialist, Everbridge, has launched a new comprehensive software-based solution to help businesses, healthcare facilities and governments automate contact tracing initiatives, keep their employees and citizens safe, and facilitate the return to work, all while safeguarding privacy.
The Everbridge solution represents the digital transformation of contact tracing when compared to existing approaches which tend to fall into two more-limited categories: highly manual human calling supported by case management tools, or one of a variety of standalone opt-in-based mobile apps. Everbridge says its COVID-19 Shield: Contact Tracing solution represents a fundamental paradigm shift for corporate, government and healthcare organizations to more safely return people to work with a faster, more accurate, less costly approach, that also safeguards individual privacy. It can supplement or complement existing manual contact tracing efforts and triangulates multiple sources of data.
As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published recently: “Identifying contacts and ensuring they do not interact with others is critical to protect communities from further spread. If communities are unable to effectively isolate patients and ensure contacts can separate themselves from others, rapid community spread of COVID-19 is likely to increase to the point that strict mitigation strategies will again be needed to contain the virus… Technology partners are key in the modification of existing systems and the development of new user-friendly data interfaces to manage multiple data streams with seamless interoperability.”
Everbridge’s solution combines an existing mobile app for wellness checks and self-reporting combined with pre-existing integrations of company systems to compile a set of actionable information. The mobile app enables individuals to track their symptoms and status with regular wellness checks. When necessary, the system can quickly identify other workers who have been exposed to the virus and communicate the appropriate isolation protocols in an automated manner.
COVID-19 Shield: Contact Tracing uses data from physical badge access control systems, Wi-Fi hot spots, calendaring systems, travel itineraries, visitor management, and thermal cameras to determine who may have been exposed to an individual with COVID-19. Bluetooth Low Energy proximity data compiled from digital wayfaring capabilities add information on who was within close proximity. Special needs registries help protect the most vulnerable people by highlighting if they have been near an infection. It utlizes real-time risk intelligence based on 22,000 data sources across 175 countries, tracks everything from virus hotspots (including a dedicated coronavirus data feed) and travel restrictions, to quarantines and states of emergency in order to determine if people are near areas of heightened risk. In addition, crisis management capabilities automate workflows to alert people potentially at risk.
Everbridge says the solution has various additional use cases for government, healthcare and businesses including:
- Track risk of infection based on location, proximity to hot zones and/or recent potential exposure through travel.
- Conduct indoor location-based tracing, room occupancy and employee density monitoring, physical distancing detection, and Personal Protective Equipment compliance assessment.
- Collect accurate data by combining always-on proximity reporting with opt-in polling from employees via their mobile devices.
- Guide patients’ indoor movement, including the Direct to Navigate feature for COVID-19 positive patients, and the Wayfinder feature for all other patients, thereby reducing the risk of contagion.
- Help support resumption of surgeries that had been put on hold due to the pandemic.