75 positive cases were identified as a result of the Covid Alert app in its first 39 days, the Health Minister has confirmed.
Speaking in the States Assembly, Deputy Richard Renouf explained that “the fact that the app is built on the basis of anonymity means the provision of specific metrics can be challenging."
“However, in the first 39 days of the app’s use, 75 positive cases were provided with passcodes by the contact tracing team. The app identified that these 75 cases were in direct contact with at least 175 other people, of which some who went onto test positive.”
Explaining its use in the process of contact tracing, Deputy Renouf said that “initial interviews are often challenging for the positive case, due to the shock of being confirmed as having covid 19,” and that the app helps to identify those that may have slipped the interviewee’s mind.
Pictured: Health Minister Deputy Richard Renouf said the positive cases the app identified were in direct contact with 175 other people.
However, there were questions around whether users were finding ways to misuse the app, with Senator Sam Mezec enquiring if there were metrics on how many people had uninstalled it, which Deputy Renouf confirmed he did not have.
Giving his reasons for his question, Senator Mezec said: “The way I understand it… it may be possible for people to deliberately deactivate the app on their device if they believe they’re coming up to an event they’re coming up for isolation for and not want to receive notifications.”
The app, developed by Digital Jersey and technology developer NearForm, was launched on October 14. It cost the Government over £240,000 to kickstart, and currently has 44,527 users, with 200 users having received an alert since its inception.
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