Coronavirus app could track your location during quarantine

Florida Department of Health in Orange County exploring use of data sharing app

ORLANDO, Fla. – The Florida Department of Health in Orange County is exploring the use of a smartphone app that would help monitor those who test positive for the coronavirus.

"The results were amazing," said Dr. Raul Pino, the health officer for FDOH in Orange County.

He told News 6 agencies around the county who have used the app are getting results.

He said people who test positive for the virus can download the app, get a log in and communicate directly with health officials.

He said the app allows the patients to share symptoms, concerns and vital statistics, and health officials can also respond.

"We can say, 'hey, I detected that you have a increase in your temperature. Are you okay?'" he said.

He said the app can also track your location to make sure you are staying in quarantine.

"This is my contract with you. You have to be home for 14 days. Sign here," Pino said.

With nearly 7,000 new cases of coronavirus reported over the last two weeks in Orange County, Pino said an app could help reduce his team’s workload.

“Efficiency, efficiency, efficiency,” said Uri Bettesh, founder and CEO of Datos Health.

Speaking to News 6 from Tel Aviv, Israel, Bettesh said his app is helping public health officials around the world monitor people who test positive for COVID-19.

He said he realizes privacy is a chief concern, especially when it comes to tracking patients’ locations, and that’s why he said patients would need to opt-in for that feature to work.

"We have the ability to monitor a lot of information," Bettesh said. "We don't do that. We only collect information that is required, and it's also stated in the Terms of Use."

Bettesh said people are not tech-savvy would have daily survey texted to them to see how their symptoms were.

Pino said his agency is just exploring this idea now, but if the numbers continue to rise he may have to take a closer look at it.

About the Author: