Telkom in track and trace solution for Covid-19

Johannesburg – A Telkom team has been working with the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) to develop a track and trace solution to identify people who may have contracted Covid-19.

  The track and trace system is in line with global best practice promoted by the World Health Organisation (WHO), and also takes account of South Africa’s unique circumstances which include high income inequality, poverty and overcrowding.

  Telkom CEO Sipho Maseko said they are deeply concerned with what the spread of this pandemic may mean for ordinary South Africans, and the overstretched health sector. “We are privileged to be able to contribute to this solution, which we believe will help to contain the spread of new infections,” he said.

  He added that the track and trace system collates multiple data sources such as GIS to track an infected person’s exposure and who they may have unknowingly exposed the virus to. “This reduces the current reliance on the patient’s own recollections of who they may have exposed unknowingly and enables the CSIR to contact people who were in the same proximity as the patient.”

  In some communities the Health Department will use trackers to trace primary contacts and ensure testing for secondary contacts. The system will integrate the information collected by the trackers.

  Telkom has partnered with Samsung to distribute 1 500 handsets to trackers across the country.

   Samsung Africa CEO Sung Yoon said this is a generation-defining moment. “This is a challenge unlike any other. However, our belief remains steadfast and strong. Working together we will rise to this challenge,” he said.

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