From robots that can disinfect, to smart helmets and thermal camera drones, Technology is helping China with the combat against Covid-19.
At the centre of the outbreak in the country, China has used these invaluable aids to try to contain the spread of the infection by identifying symptoms and also identifying potential people carrying the virus.
These helpful devices are obviously helping to limit human interaction and most vitally, helping medical staff to avoid being infected.
Drones-These are being deployed to transport vital medical supplies/samples between hospitals. They can also identify potential carriers by using thermal imaging cameras. All controlled remotely so human contact is prevented.
Robots- These automated machines are utilised to deliver meals to isolated people, particularly in hotels/hostels etc. They are also being used to disinfect areas that would be dangerous for humans to enter.
Tracking App.- SenseTime-This is a more controversial use of technology, where it can track and identify, by temperature detection software and facial recognition. It is deployed in public places like the underground, schools, community centres & stations, generally where there are large groups of people, and will detect anyone who has contracted the virus.
Mobile Phones- China has also developed an app that citizens can use on their phones, via the use of an app called Alipay Health Code. This allocates a colour to each person, either Green, yellow or red, depending on whether they can go out in public places or they have to stay in Isolation.
Again though, this app comes with great controversy, as each person needs to provide their name, national ID number and Phone number and there is little known about how safe and secure this personal data is. Already there are reports of some breaches across the internet.
Although all this technology will not totally prevent the spread of covid-19, it will certainly help to slow it down considerably, giving more chance for scientists to develop a cure.
With over 90,000 now infected worldwide, every country must now be vigilant and think about our actions and how it could and will affect others, particularly the elderly and more venerable, whether Technology has an involvement or not.
The best way to prevent further infection is to imagine that you, yourself have the virus already and you must avoid any ‘physical’ contact with anyone and hopefully, together, we can slow down the spread, giving our NHS and all medical services the chance to cope with those who are already infected and need vital help.