In today’s era, widely and rapidly spreading diseases is a huge concern for medical professionals around the globe. And currently, the world is fighting with one such disease, Coronavirus, that has taken the shape of Pandemic. While treatments are still in development, health professionals look up to technology as a saviour when it comes to diagnosing and tackling the ailment. 

Not only the medical experts, but the deadly virus has also prompted many to look upon fast-growing technology as their pal. In the time of lockdown and social isolation when daily life is at a standstill, technology has already started to make a difference. The futuristic technologies are making the lives of people in quarantine livable.

So, here I will talk about a few ways in which technology is helping mankind amid Coronavirus outbreak

Infrared thermometer 

You must have observed that since the Covi19 outbreak the authorities are regularly monitoring the temperature at airports, malls, and other public places, and the device they use is not a normal thermometer instead they are using infrared thermometers. These thermometers, although relatively new, have become the most widely used device at the moment.

They allow professionals to check human body temperature by sensing the infrared energy radiated by the body and hence eliminate the need of physical contact.

SenseTime, a leading AI company, says its contactless temperature detection software has been used in more than 1,000 hospitals and clinics in China, according to a New York Times report.

Drones

In this difficult time when people have to maintain social distance by staying inside their homes due to the fear of pandemic Coronavirus, health authorities are taking the help of Drones to develop new ways of delivering healthcare services. Over the past few months, many countries have adopted drone technology to reduce person to person contact. 

Few ways in which government authorities and healthcare professionals are using drones –

  • For mass spraying of disinfectants. As compared to hand sprays drone sprays are more effective. Many drone service providers are extending their services to the authorities at no cost.
  • Police officials are using this advanced technology for surveillance to ensure that people are following the lockdown and maintaining social distancing
  • Media organizations are using drones to capture the photos and shoot videos of streets
  • According to the Wall Street Journal article, the Chinese government has been using drones equipped with thermal sensors to identify the sick people roaming in the streets.

Robotics

Since the outbreak of COVID many hospitals in China are using Robots to deliver food, medicines and other essentials to the patients, to minimize human contact. Robots are also used to disinfect hospital rooms, check patient’s temperature and assist them in answering their queries.

This technology is also proving helpful for delivering orders placed online by people who are put in quarantine. A Shanghai-based online food delivery service used robots to deliver meals to quarantined people held as suspects of carrying the virus.

Artificial Intelligence

AI has already done wonders in the field of healthcare. The rapid increase in wearables and other medical devices combined with AI has helped in diagnosing diseases at an early stage giving a chance to doctors to better treat the patient. If we talk about recent years, researchers have used artificial intelligence to predict Zika outbreaks and track down the insects that spread Chagas disease. 

In the case of Covid-19 as well, healthcare professionals are using AI-enabled health apps and chatbots to screen feverish and coughing people and advise them on whether they should be screened for coronavirus infection. BlueDot, a Canadian company, is using AI to scan daily health information for the first time in the United States. The AI technology is even powering new tracking software that might help identify those walking around with a fever or catch people violating quarantine rules.

Contactless biometrics system

With the deadly Covid-19 at its peak, healthcare organizations are continuously warning people to not touch any surface, especially those which are publicly shared without wearing gloves, as you might get in contact with the virus. This has raised concerns among businesses and airports that use fingerprints to identify employees and record their attendance and scan passengers during immigration checkpoints.

But by using contactless biometric systems like Iris, Gait the spread of the virus via shared contact can be controlled. Many public and private organizations are using facial recognition technology to eliminate the risk of coming in contact with shared surfaces. Iris verifies your face even if you have your mask on.

And, if studies are to be believed, hands-free door openers are also in process.

Mobile apps

Apart from entertaining you, apps are also contributing their bit in fighting Covid-19. Whether it’s to update about an infected patient or tracking nearby testing centres, mobile apps have taken more space in one’s smartphone.

In the UK, a startup recently launched a mobile app using which people can self report their symptoms. South Korea has an app called Corona 100m that has mapped the locations of Covid-19 patients and alerts users if they come within 100 metres of an infected person. Arogya Setu, an app developed under the initiative of the Indian Government, is designed to help citizens find if they have been in contact with a COVID infected person. The app creates a social graph by using GPS and Bluetooth features.

Apart from assisting the healthcare sector, mobile apps have turned out to be boon for people who are in their homes following the lockdown.

Business continuity 

The monstrous virus has resulted in a great loss to the economy as many businesses cannot operate during this time. But technology is a saviour to companies where remote working is possible. Large numbers of organizations around the globe are practising work from home culture to maintain social distancing to fight the virus. 

Suggested read – How to increase productivity while working from home

Whether or not you are in the same city or country, with tools such as Skype, Google Hangouts, Zoom, Slack, WebX, etc. it has become really easy to remain connected with your co-workers. So use the technology to the fullest and maintain that efficiency!

Learn from Home  

Although schools and colleges are closed following the spread of the deadly virus there is no ban on learning. With technology, not only remote business but remote education is also possible. By leveraging the power of technology educational institutes around the globe have moved to an online learning model. 

With the evolution of multiple eLearning systems, it has become easy for the institutes and parents to keep their kid’s mind engaged during the lockdown. These online learning solutions provide courses in the form of text, images and interactive videos and also conduct mock tests and provide scores. In the wake of Covid-19 many edtech companies like Byjus, uLesson, are giving free or subsidized learning material for the students to cope up with the course.

Not only kids but many celebrities are also leveraging the power of online learning to keep themselves fit, practise dance and acting via video tutorials or live classes. 

Entertainment 

When it comes to entertainment, technology has already won this sector. In this tough time of lockdown when people cannot go outside on weekends, technology has saved them from boredom. Binge-watch your favourite web series or play online games with your friends. With online video chat apps do a video chit chat with your family and friends who are away from you. 

Platforms like Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, TikTok and Instagram are playing a major role in keeping people engaged. Many Social media enthusiasts are sharing their video clips of cooking, cleaning, gardening, dancing, exercising, etc from home to keep others motivated. Government and Healthcare professionals are using various digital platforms to educate their countrymen about the cons of Coronavirus and how staying at home can save them from the fatal disease.

Moreover, Entertainment technology is helping COVID patients and the suspects stay sane as they can connect with their families and friends over the internet. 

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