State launches new app used in fight against COVID-19

Local News

The state continues to use technology in the fight against the spread of COVID-19.

This week, they released a COVID-19 alert app that can notify users if they may have been exposed to the virus. Governor Tom Wolf is urging everyone with a smart phone to download the free COVID alert app, the more people that download the app, the more effective it will be in helping to stop the spread of COVID_19.

The app was developed by the State Department of Health and its features include an interactive COVID-19 symptom checker, and opt in alerts for potential exposure to the virus.

“It’s basically an added level of helping the contact tracing process to limit the spread of the virus. The more people that download the app, the better we are doing our duty to our community and helping our contact tracers to limit the spread of this virus.” said Christopher Mansour, Assistant Professor of Cyber Security at Mercyhurst University.

The app keeps the identity of its users private. It does not use GPS, but a technology that will let you know if your phone is within six feet of another person with the app.

“Technology is helpful, trust this technology, especially since you are not giving any person information.” Mansour said.

JET 24 Action News spoke to one Erie resident who says technology is a good things when it comes to the fight against COVID-19.

“I think technology is amazing, and we need to use all of our resources to track who is exposed and also to notify people so that they know that they have been exposed as well.” said Cate Stiller.

The app can be found in the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store. According to the state website, over 50,000 people downloaded the app in the first 24 hours.

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Pennsylvania COVID-19 Map

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Health

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