Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives at Parliament Hill’s West Block for a meeting of the Special Committee on the COVID-19 Pandemic in the House of Commons, in Ottawa, on Wednesday, June 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives at Parliament Hill’s West Block for a meeting of the Special Committee on the COVID-19 Pandemic in the House of Commons, in Ottawa, on Wednesday, June 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

COVID-19 tracing app to soon be made available nationwide

Anyone who tests positive for the virus will be able to anonymously upload their status to a national network

The federal government will soon be launching a contact tracing app for COVID-19, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Thursday (June 18).

The news comes as Canada reached another grim milestone amid the pandemic earlier that morning, with more than 100,000 test-positive cases recorded since the novel coronavirus touched down in January.

Trudeau said that anyone who tests positive for the virus will be able to anonymously upload their status to a national network that would notify other app users who have been in close contact with that person, and then watch their symptoms and be tested if needed.

The hope is that the digital technology will limit the spread of COVID-19, which has no vaccine or cure.

The more people who use the completely voluntary app, the better it will work, Trudeau added.

The app is being designed by a number of corporate stakeholders, including the Canadian Digital Service, Shopify and Blackberry. Ontario and B.C. officials are also apart of the roll out.

Contact tracing and other related measures to track the epidemiology of the virus has sparked concern by various privacy watchdog groups.

ALSO READ: Privacy watchdogs concerned about apps tracking COVID-19 patients

Trudeau stressed that the privacy of Canadians will be respected.

More to come.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(File image)
Break-in suspects arrested after foot pursuit by Kelowna RCMP

Two men have been charged with break and enter, theft under $5,000, and breach of a court order

Kate Pauling selling her cookies. (Contributed)
Kelowna newspaper carrier spreads joy to children in need

Kate Pauling fund-raises for Samaritan’s Purse Shoe Boxes

Ashley Stone’s Village App is one of the semi-finalists for the Total Mom Pitch. (The Village App - Facebook)
Kelowna mom’s app semi-finalist in Canada’s Total Mom Pitch

Ashley Stone is developing an app called Village, a community-based messaging platform where people can ask for and offer help

Business district is pictured during a traffic jam in Jakarta, Indonesia, June 20, 2019. REUTERS/Willy Kurniawan
Morning Start: By 2050, 95 percent of North Jakarta could be submerged

Your morning start for Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020

Highway 5 southbound lanes are closed near Exit 286. Pictured are southbound lanes at 7:06 p.m. (DriveBC)
Coquihalla Highway southbound lanes closed due to vehicle incident

Southbound lanes closed between Exit 286: Merritt and the start of Hwy 5

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. daily COVID-19 cases hits record 941 on Tuesday

Further restrictions on indoor exercise take effect

A fentanyl test strip is used at Vancouver Coastal Health in Vancouver, Tuesday, January, 21, 2020. The test strips will be made available to drug users to ensure that their drugs are safe and free of Fentanyl. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Drug overdoses lead to 5 deaths each day in October; drug toxicity continues to increase

COVID-19 crisis continues to exacerbate the overdose crisis

The Vernon Public Art Gallery is looking to the community to support its programming, which VantageOne Credit Union is matching for Giving Tuesday. (VPAG image)
Vernon art gallery gets a boost for Giving Tuesday

VantageOne Credit Union matching donations

The Vernon swimming pool is closed Friday. (morning star file photo)
Swim, skate and play fees rise 5% in North Okanagan

Weekend hours also reduced as rec centre struggles with fewer people and fewer funds

The City of Salmon Arm erected a fence around the Ross Street Plaza on Nov. 24/2020, citing reasons centering on safety and security due to camping by people who don’t have homes. The closure is temporary but it’s not known when it will be reopened. (Martha Wickett - Salmon Arm Observer)
City of Salmon Arm erects fence around public plaza to prevent camping

Lieutenant says lack of public space affects people without homes but he understands city’s decision

An employee of the Adventure Hotel was taken to hospital on Nov. 20 after she confronted a customer of Empire Coffee about not wearing a mask. File photo.
Nelson hotel employee suffers heart attack after being assaulted in anti-mask incident

An accountant at the Adventure Hotel is in hospital in Kelowna

Interior Health and School District 83 are responding to a confirmed COVID-19 exposure at the Salmon Arm Secondary Sullivan campus. (File photo)
COVID-19 exposure confirmed at Salmon Arm Secondary Sullivan campus

School District 83 says member of school community self-isolating at home

Gord Portman has been reunited with his dog Zippy after reaching out to the community for help covering the cost of Zippy’s surgery. Zippy had successful mouth surgery Nov. 19, 2020 and has made a full recovery since. (Jesse Day - Western News)
Penticton rallies to save dog’s life

Gord Portman reached out to the community to help with the cost of his dog’s surgery

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Most Read