Covid app downloaded 100,000 times in The Netherlands
The Dutch government introduced coronavirus notification app called CoronaMelder. This App was massively downloaded on the first day of its release, despite warnings from the Dutch Data Protection Authority (AP) that the app does not guarantee users' privacy sufficiently. According to the RTL reports, within a day, the app was downloaded over 100 thousand times from the Google Play Store. CoronaMelder App was one of the top three most popular apps in the Netherlands. The App launched on Android and iOS.
The idea behind the app is to help health service GGD with source and contact tracing. If an app user tests positive for Covid-19, the app can be used to notify all other app users who had been in close vicinity with the patient for longer than 15 minutes that they too may be infected and need to get tested if they show symptoms. The app is currently only functional in Drenthe and Overijssel, where it is being tested. In September the App will be available in all regions in The Netherland.
How does the app work
The app sends you a notification if you have been near someone who has tested positive for coronavirus, if you were near them for more than 15 minutes. If you want to know whether you were infected, you can arrange a test with the GGD by telephone, free of charge. This can help you avoid passing the virus on to other people without knowing it..
- The app uses Bluetooth to detect other people who are around you, as long as they have the app too.
- The closer you are to the other person, the stronger the Bluetooth signal is.
- You do not need to enter your location, name, e-mail address, telephone number or any other contact details in order for the app to work. The app does not know who you are, who the other person is, or your location.
- If you have been near someone with the app who later tests positive for coronavirus, the app will alert you of this.
- If you test positive for coronavirus yourself, you can also choose to add this information to the app. This is voluntary. If you do this, the app will then alert all the other app users you have been near. The alert will only tell them the day on which they were near somebody who has tested positive. It does not tell them who that person was, or where they were at the time
My coronavirus test is positive. What happens now?
If you have tested positive for coronavirus in one of the trial regions, you can add this information to the app,together with the GGD. . If an employee of the GGD calls you with the test result, they will ask you if want to warn other people via the app. If you choose this option the receiver can’t see who you are or on which location you were near each other.You can decide whether these notifications are sent. This is not compulsory, and it is not automatic.
- GGD Drenthe
- GGD Gelderland-Zuid
- GGD IJsselland
- GGD Noord- en Oost-Gelderland
- GGD Twente
Most important, the summary of the symptoms that coronavirus can cause, and information about the test. You can make an appointment for a test directly from the app.