A team of experts from the KNUST School of Public Health have developed a web-based app, called COVID-19 TECHBOT.
COVID-19 TECHBOT is the idea of Dr Arti Singh of the KNUST Hospital, who says the innovation was informed by the need to reduce excessive doctor-patient contact during this period due to the risk of cross-infection and reduce exposure to healthcare workers.
“We want to reduce as much as possible non-essential visits by patients. We don’t want many people to come to the hospital setting because these places are currently the most risky areas,” she explains.
Dr Singh leveraged her experience in the use of technology for control of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and hypertension; with the support of Dean of Public Health, Prof Ellis Owusu-Dabo, and Kenneth Asante Owusu of the University Information Technology Services, to design an app that can be used to assess risk for COVID-19.
“It’s meant to reduce anxiety and panic that is caused by the COVID-19 so that people can sit in their homes and assess their risk in the comfort of their homes,” she said.
The App, which is now a free weblink, was designed based on guidelines from the World Health Organisation and Ghana Health Service.
It gives assessment based on answers composed from 8 questions.
“It consists of eight questions with multiple choice options with different scores assigned to each response,” Dr Singh explains.
The tool provides a final risk assessment of the individual ranging from, low, medium to high risk.
“After that, it gives you advice on what you’re supposed to do. If you’re found to be high- risk it provides you with helpline numbers from the Ghana Health Service and because it was designed with students and staff of the university in mind, there are contact numbers of the university hospital, as well,” she revealed.
“The App which was deployed in the first week of April has had more than 6,000 responses already. Over 4,000 are low risk and a few of them; 86 are high risk. Most of the high-risk assessments are males,” Mr Asante Owusu disclosed.
Unlike the GH COVID-19 tracker developed by the Ghana Health Service which demands personal details such as mobile number and email ID, TECHBOT does not demand these details.
Click HERE to access the app.
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