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Philippines eyes Singapore-based contact tracing app for COVID-19

The Department of Information and Communications Technology on Sunday said the Philippines is looking into a Singapore-based contact tracing application for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

“TraceTogether,” which is a community-driven app launched last March 20, records encounter between app users by exchanging short-distance Bluetooth signals   between phones within  two to five-meter proximity.

“If one app user tested positive for COVID-19, authorities will be able to identify other app users who were in close contact with the patient,” the DICT said in a statement.

DICT secretary Gregorio Honasan said Singaporean Ambassador Ho Wei Hong is willing to provide technical assistance for the tool, which is also in partnership with the Department of Health and other government agencies.

Earlier, Singapore donated additional 40,000 test kits to the country as it grapples with the rising number of infections.

The Philippines has so far reported a total of 3,094 COVID-19 cases; 144 deaths; and 57 recoveries.  —Ma. Angelica Garcia/LBG, GMA News