Airtel, Jio, Vodafone to help Indian govt with Covid-19 contact tracing calls
The government is planning to team up with telcos like Vodafone, Airtel and Jio to enable contract tracing calls to subscribers
The Indian government might soon be making calls to nearly 900 million people to check if they have Covid-19 symptoms or not. Since the lockdown has been extended by another two weeks and many people in the country have feature phones that cannot download the Aarogya Setu app, calls might be the only way to check on them for now.
To ensure large scale contact tracing through Aarogya Setu, the government will be teaming up with Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio to reach out to their subscribers.
The centre is working on expanding the Aarogya Setu app to nearly 550 million feature phones and an Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS) will also be developed that will be fluent in all Indian languages. This IVRS will be speaking to users to check on Covid-19 symptoms and will automatically alert local health authorities if action needs to be taken.
The government will also probably do a pan-India roll out of the IVRS to ensure that users update their health status.
This collaboration between telcos and the government is already on in a way with health officials from Ayushman Bharat reaching out to people to check on their health conditions, with feedback from Aarogya Setu. Nearly 75,000 calls have been made already and Aarogya Setu is also being tested on Jio Phones to help reach 150 million users approximately.
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