Samoa launches Covid-19 Travel Tracer App

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A Travel Tracer App that will enable contact tracing in the event of the Covid-19 entering and spreading in Samoa, was launched by the Prime Minister Thursday.

Samoa’s own Covid-19 contact tracing platform is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Health and the Samoa Tourism Authority.

In her remarks, Prime Minister Fiame Naomi Mataafa emphasised that the tracing app will be significant and useful to the people of Samoa in combating the Cvid-19 virus.

“Since the start of the pandemic, governments and stakeholders around the world involved in the fight against the virus have relied on data analytics and digital technologies to help contain the spread of the virus,” she said.

“Mobile applications are complimentary responses to perform contact monitoring. They enable automatic detection of close contacts and that helps save precious hours of work for public health to trace a chain of infection.

“The Samoa Travel tracer is based on the privacy reserving blue trace code developed in Singapore and I am pleased to share that the app was developed locally in partnership with the SkyEye and the Samoa Information Technology Association.”

Known as Samoa Travel Tracer, this mobile application is a vital component of the Samoa travel ready tool kit.

The tool kit is a robust framework consisting of core areas that must be developed to support the case to restart international travel when it is safe to do so.

Additional components of the tool kit comprise of vaccination, tourism business operated training and maintenance, as well as sales and marketing initiatives.

This app uses bluetooth to trace close contact between users and authorities in countries such as Fiji and New Zealand use similar apps in order to quarantine people who may have come into close contact with a person who had contracted Covid-19.

The Samoa Tourism Authority announced the Samoa Travel Tracer App back in June this year.

The mobile software application is the result of a collaborative travel-ready approach by Government through the Ministry of Health and the Samoa Tourism Authority to help ensure the country is well placed to respond to any spread of Covid-19.
The Samoa Tourism Authority explained that the app demonstrates Samoa’s commitment to ensuring it’s in a position to open its borders when the time is right and safely welcome visitors.

STA says the Tracer App is a very user-friendly one where you basically just download it, put your Bluetooth on and that’s it. It stores all the information on the phone, and doesn’t record the location, but it will record details of anyone within 10 meters of you, who must also have the app installed on his/her mobile device.

SOURCE: TALAMUA ONLINE/PACNEWS