UP engineers testing mobile application for COVID-19 tracking

Published May 26, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Ellalyn de Vera-Ruiz

Experts from the College of Engineering of the University of the Philippines (UP) are now testing a mobile application that can track people at higher risk of contracting the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

The ConTra+ mobile app project is led by College of Engineering professor Ariel Blanco, and team members, assistant professors Czar Jakiri Sarmiento, Roseanne Ramos, Ransie Joy Apura, and Edgardo Macatulad.

The app is a system utilizing satellite positioning systems, bluetooth technology, geographic information system, and citizen science for effective contact tracing, tracking information sharing, and feedback, the team explained in a community bulletin post on their website.

It noted that the local government of Quezon City has already expressed its desire to adopt the project’s output.

A coordination meeting with the Quezon City Mayor’s Office was held on May 11, where the effective use and implementation of the project in the city were discussed.

“The project’s vulnerability maps can be used to identify areas where stricter enhanced community quarantine should be imposed and mass testing be prioritized,” the experts said.

Also part of the project is the creation of a tracing system that will allow individuals or groups to check hospital medical stockpiles, which is important in donation activities.

The Tracing for Allocation of Medical Supplies (TrAMS) is an online system composed of geographic and tracking information of hospital medical supplies.

The team cited the project’s two main components—spatial database development and web interface design and development.

It explained that spatial database development constitutes the compilation and verification of geographic information from several sources, such as existing databases from hospitals, from the academic community and from other parties, and social media posts

Meanwhile, it pointed out that the web interface development involves the identification of key features of the web application, storyboarding, database shema design, and implementation with MERN technology stack.

The team said the project’s interface has been deployed, as such, government agencies, donors, and other interested parties may use the system as a tool for effective response and distribution of supplies.

The web link can be accessed through https://trams.com.ph/.