COVID Tracking App Use Delayed by Privacy, Tech Issues

Governing: Struggles by HealthPartners to get a COVID-19 crowdsourcing app in broad use reflect the difficulties of using mobile device technology to trace the course of the pandemic across the U.S.

The Bloomington, Minnesota-based health system launched SafeDistance on April 17, relying largely on users to input information that could indicate the risk levels of COVID-19 down to the neighborhood. And it has worked, too, with users anonymously reporting when they have respiratory symptoms, and the app then identifying their neighborhoods as risk zones for others.

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