Singapore

TraceTogether programme wins international award

TraceTogether, the national contact tracing programme, has won recognition on the international stage for its innovative use of digital technology.

Yesterday, market research firm Gartner crowned TraceTogether as the Asia-Pacific winner of its inaugural 2020 Government Eye on Innovation award.

Award winners were selected via a poll of government organisations around the world.

TraceTogether beat out three other finalists in the Asia-Pacific region - two from Taiwan and one from India.

The respective winners for the Americas and the Europe, Middle East and Africa region were a Covid-19 data sharing platform developed by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, and an automated financial support platform by Swedish social insurance agency Forsakringskassan Sweden.

"We are humbled and grateful for the support we have received from our 3.4 million users - 60 per cent of Singapore's population," said TraceTogether team lead and GovTech senior director Jason Bay.

"Thank you for walking this journey of community-driven contact tracing with us, and supporting the use of Bluetooth mobile technology to contribute in the fight against Covid-19."

The TraceTogether programme comprises a mobile app and a token that is an alternative to the app. Both the app and token identify those in close contact with people who tested positive for Covid-19, by using proximity data collected via Bluetooth technology.

TraceTogether-only SafeEntry will be mandatory after everyone who needs a token has collected one. This is slated to take place at the end of the year, and checking in with the TraceTogether app or token will be mandatory at public venues including restaurants and shopping malls.

Following a surge in demand in October, the tokens are being distributed one constituency at a time.

At the moment, they are being given out at 37 community centres and clubs, including Aljunied and Bukit Batok CCs. - THE STRAITS TIMES

Technology