Early this year, as the COVID-19 pandemic began to spread across Asia, one company made a fast pivot to provide a solution that could help to flatten the curve. Drawing on monitoring technology initially used in maternity wards and nursing homes, TraceSafe developed a suite of safety wearables and contract tracing technology to facilitate social distancing practices.
Canadian-based TraceSafe first provided the government of Hong Kong with monitoring bracelets, which were given out by healthcare providers and authorities at airports. The bracelets connect with software that allowed the Hong Kong government to enforce strict quarantine amongst travelers and those who tested positive for COVID-19. These and other measures likely contributed to Hong Kong’s success in controlling the spread of the disease within its borders.
TraceSafe has announced contracts with other countries in Asia and the Middle East. While the United States government isn’t likely to implement that level of personal monitoring, TraceSafe has applications that don’t raise the ethical and privacy issues when considered on a national scale. Healthcare facilities, businesses, manufacturing and construction sites, and large venues can incorporate the wristbands and software into their safety plans.
Administrators can set contact parameters within the software (typically 6 feet of distance). The system automatically logs events when people wearing the wristband come too close to each other. Administrators receive reports regarding contact hotspots and other data, and the system offers fast, simple contract tracing if a user does become infected with COVID-19.
In June, the Toronto Wolfpack professional rugby contracted with TraceSafe to provide the wristbands to fans attending Wolfpack games, when they resume in Canada. Future contracts in the US and other countries could boost the impact contract tracing has on the ongoing coronavirus crisis.