South Korea: App monitors and enforces patient lockdown


With 6,300 COVID-19 cases and more than 40 reported deaths, the South Korean government launched a smarphone app (Android first, iPhone due on March 20)  to monitor citizens on lockdown as part of its "maximum" action to contain the outbreak. The app keeps patients in touch with care workers and uses GPS to keep track of their location to ensure they don't break quarantine. The government said the tracking was essential to manage the case load (at the time, 30,000 people) and prevent "super spreaders". The app sends an alert to both the subject and the case officer if they leave their designated area. Other measures include drive-through testing stations and "rigorous transparency" that has led to privately-developed map services that track confirmed carriers and alerts that municipal and district governments send to inform individuals of new cases.