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How Technology Is Helping In The Fight Against The Coronavirus

How Technology Is Helping In The Fight Against The Corona virus 

The Coronavirus have caused a lot of panic and fear around the world. As the number of new cases continue to increase, citizens and government are now turning to various technology to help combat the virus.

Here are just a few ways technology is helping into the fight against the Coronavirus around the world.

1. Eletronic payment
While studies are still going on consigning how long the virus can stay alive on surfaces, there is little doubt that people can be exposed to it through paper money.

To avoid this, cashless payment like bank transfer and mobile payment are helping to reduce the spread of the Coronavirus as more and more people turn to electronic payment.

Stores and E-commerce platforms are now encouraging people not to use cash because of the Coronavirus. Jumia, an online shopping platform, have stopped receiving cash payment in Nigeria from customers who choose to pay on delivery. Instead, customers are advice to use any of the electronic payment method to pay for items.

Although a WHO (World health Organization) spokesman had said in an email that they never ask people to avoid banknotes. WHO did advice people to wash their hands after handling banknotes.

2. Drones
Around the world, authorities are turning to drones in the battle against the novel Coronavirus. Drones are being dispatched to respond to outbreaks across cities.

In China, the authorities are using drones equipped with thermal cameras to identify people who are sick and walking outdoors. The drones are used to effectively scan the population and identify those with high temperature who are not suppose to be outside.

Sometimes Drones are equipped with loud speakers and are being used to warn citizens to wear face mask.

In France, the authorities are testing surveillance drones in identifying those who have broken lockdown laws.

Tech startups are also exploring the potential of using drones against the spread of the virus. The Ireland base startup Manna Aero has become the world first drone delivering service. Delivering essential items like medicine to the venerable on lockdown.

Drones have also been used to deliver medical supplies, while others are used to spray disinfectant in remote places.

3. Mobile Phones
Believe it or not, that tiny gadget you are holding on your hands is playing a critical role in reducing exposure and encouraging social distancing.

In some countries like China, some delivery apps offer contactless delivery. Where your items is dropped off for you at an agreed point.

In countries where restrictions have been placed on movement, people are keeping themselves company with their mobile phones by playing mobile games, watching movies, surfing the web etc.

As more and more countries impose lockdown in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19, the number of users using their mobile phone to watch videos online have increase greatly that Googles-owned YouTube had to place a restriction on the  of videos at 480p in some countries.

In countries like Nigeria, the telecom company MTN have made the WHO website free for users to visit, thereby making it easier for users to get information about the latest happening on the Coronavirus.

4. The Internet
One of the main challenge people are facing with the COVID-19 pandemic is being able to work and avoid exposure at the same time. Several large and small businesses, now make use of online collaboration tool via the internet that allow employees to work from home.

Buycoin, a Nigeria base cryptocurrency startup have already ask its employees to work from home. Other companies like irokoTV and piggyvest are also trying out remote work
5. Robots
We saw the Chinese use unmanned robots to deliver food to patients who were in quarantine. For instance, the authorities in China tracked a man with facial recognition camera who had traveled in an affected area. Upon returning home, the police were already there to instruct him to self isolate.

Self driving start up Neolix has already began using its autonomous vehicles to deliver supplies and food to a hospitals in Beijing. It has also made its autonomous driving cloud service available for free to companies fighting the pandemic.

As the number of cases for COVID-19 continue to rise, other nations are now employing the same technology. Robots are also use to check patients temperature, and to disinfect public areas.
Even the WHO collaborated with Facebook-owned WhatsApp to create a chatbot called "WHO Heart Alert" which uses AI to provide information and respond to question concerning the Coronavirus.

6. E-medical Care
Apart from the Coronavirus that is causing havoc around the world, people still have other medical needs they have to deal with. As people avoid hospital, online doctors and medical deliveries are now on the rise.

There were a number of factors that were hindering the adaptation of telehealth in the past including cost and availability. But all that collapsed, especially in the US after president Donald Trump declared a national state of emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Government thus began urging doctors and patients to avoid in person visit and instead use telehealth to avoid the spread of the disease.

This has made it easier for doctors to give medical advice to patients with minor health problems without the patient being physically present at the hospital.

Big Data
With the help of big data, accessible and transparent data on the spread of the Coronavirus can be accessed and tracked by both the public and government.

For the government and health workers to be able to fight a pandemic, they must target infection clusters, allocate scare resources and limit movement of people. In other to efficiently make this decisions, there should be availability of the right data.
The big data dashboard are not just contributed by big organization like the WHO, but smaller businesses are now also contributing to it needs.

Dalberg Data insights, a Belgium organisation has been analysing aggregated telecom data. Based on instruction by the Belgium government. This data are used to analyse human mobility trend during lockdown and to evaluate infection rate at a specific region.

All of this gadgets and services provide strong example as to how technology is contributing against the spread of the Coronavirus.

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