Virginia Rolls Out Bluetooth-Based COVID-19 Tracing App
The state of Virginia recently released COVIDWISE, a contact-tracing app designed to alert Virginia residents when they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 in order to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus. The app relies on Bluetooth technology and a system created through a partnership between Apple and Google. After downloading COVIDWISE to a smartphone, users are notified when another user who has been within 6 feet of them for more than 15 minutes—based on data from Bluetooth signals—reports a positive COVID-19 test result to the app. No names or locations are provided to protect privacy. In addition, the app does not collect personal information or location data.
Positive tests are verified with a code number provided by the Virginia Department of Health. Since its release on August 5, the app has been downloaded more than 300,000 times. Watch a video about the app from the Washington Post here.