Campaign urges UAE public to use contact tracing app

The nationwide campaign to use Al Hosn app is in line with the preventive and precautionary measures undertaken by the UAE to contain the spread of the virus.
Thursday 21/05/2020
A mobile phone shows the logo of the UAE’s contact tracing app Al Hosn. (WAM)
A mobile phone shows the logo of the UAE’s contact tracing app Al Hosn. (WAM)

ABU DHABI--The UAE’s health authorities urged the public to use the COVID-19 contact tracing app Al Hosn to help protect themselves and their communities against the spread of the virus.

A nationwide campaign was launched by the Ministry of Health and Prevention today to encourage individuals to download the app, which was launched by the UAE’s health authorities in order to facilitate access to COVID-19 test results and contact tracing across the country.

In a statement, the ministry said that while hundreds of thousands of people in the UAE are already shielding themselves from COVID-19, the app will help people more effectively trace the virus. It added that the app would be more effective the more people used it.

Contact tracing has been used for decades to successfully control the spread of infectious diseases around the world, including Ebola, SARS, and MERS, and is a part of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO’s) strategy to combat and prevent diseases.

The Al Hosn app has two key uses. It provides quick access to COVID-19 test results as well as contact tracing for rapid and accurate virus containment. The app is being updated to include a third function — remote monitoring of quarantined individuals. Once fully adopted, Al Hosn could allow safe access to public areas.

“The app helps us protect ourselves by making it easier and faster for health authorities to notify us if we come in to contact with someone who has COVID-19,” UAE health spokesperson Dr. Farida Al Hosani said.

Al Hosn is supported by iOS and Android smartphones and can be downloaded at the Apple App, Google Play, Galaxy or Huawei App Gallery stores. It is currently available in three languages – Arabic, English and Hindi.

“Technology speeds up every aspect of the contact-tracing process, from identifying and notifying contacts, to monitoring and support. But we cannot win this battle individually. Only through collective action can we contain the spread of COVID-19,” Al Hosani noted.

“Alhosn is our fast-track ticket to curb the spread and our protective shield against any future pandemics,” she added.

The campaign is in line with the preventive and precautionary measures undertaken by the UAE to contain the spread of the virus.

Wednesday, UAE health authorities confirmed 941 new cases from different nationalities, who have been isolated and are currently receiving treatment, bringing the total number of diagnosed cases to 26,004 since the end of January.

The country’s COVID-19 death toll also rose by six overnight, bringing the total number of deaths to 233, government spokesperson  Dr. Amna Al-Dahak Al-Shamsi told WAM.