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Garcia offers more details on contact tracing app

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The Gibraltar Government’s Covid-19 contact tracing app will notify mobile phone users to call 111 and to self-isolate if they have been in close proximity with someone who has tested positive for the virus.

But in order for this to work, this would mean 60% of Gibraltar’s population would be required to download the app in order to benefit from the service.

This app is modelled on the one issued by the Irish Government, and will require users to input a code when they test positive.

The app will then send out a message to those mobile phones which have been in the proximity of the infected person’s phone, asking them to call 111.

At yesterday’s press conference in No.6 Convent Place, Deputy Chief Minister, Dr Joseph Garcia, said the app will not store personal data or use location data as he shared more details.

At present the Contact Tracing Bureau is already contacting those who have been within two metres of an infected person for more than 15 minutes over the phone.

But that work is done manually through a process of detailed interviews with people who test positive.

“Public Health Gibraltar expect to put a system in place shortly where this will happen automatically,” Dr Garcia said.

“A mobile phone app has been designed and produced to assist with this.”

“Digital Services have worked with Apple, the Irish Government and their developers to bring Gibraltar’s unique contact tracing app to fruition.”

“The app and the Contact Tracing Bureau will work together side by side.”

The Covid-19 statistics for yesterday revealed that there were 11 active cases, with six of those resident in Gibraltar and five cross-frontier workers.

There are 11 test results pending and 72 people self-isolating.

Dr Garcia said the 72 people who are currently self-isolating refers to people who have called 111 or who have gone to A&E and have been told to self-isolate.

The Contact Tracing Bureau will this week disclose the number of people who they have asked to self-isolate because they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus, Dr Garcia said.

“There are 11 active cases at present and most of them come from the targeted sample,” Dr Garcia said, adding that frontline workers have shown no symptoms when tested.

“The more we hunt for the virus in order to stamp it out, the more cases are going to emerge.”

“There are eight cases from the targeted sample and the rest are cases that are turning up with symptoms and are being tested.”

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