How Stanford Medicine is using tech to connect first responders to COVID-19 testing


The First Responder COVID-19 Guide app has users take a survey with questions about their symptoms. If the symptoms suggest the first responder has a COVID-19 infection, the app will recommend testing. First responders should take the recommendation to their department infection control officer and schedule priority testing at a Stanford Health Care site.

Stanford is making the app available to police officers, firefighters and paramedics first. The academic medical system hopes to expand the app to other essential workers, including grocery store and government employees.

“If we have a first responder who has symptoms, it’s really important for them to get screened and potentially test it because they’re going to be very patient-facing and very community-facing,” said Bob Harrington, MD, chairmen of the Stanford Department of Medicine, to CNBC.

Stanford worked with Apple to build the app, using Apple’s ResearchKit and CareKit software. All data from the app stays on the patient’s device unless they share it with healthcare providers.

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