Wednesday, January 13


ABtracetogether, Business, covid alert, Government, Healthcare

British Columbia does not currently intend to adopt the COVID alert app

The Government of British Columbia does not intend to adopt the federal COVID Alert exposure notification application. CTV News reports that the provincial government has not disclosed whether it has made any progress towards adopting the app. “It has been a challenge for us. We have not reached an agreement. It is not at the point where it would be useful for what we are handling here in BC for our pandemic right now, "said BC health official Bonnie Henry. Calls for the province to adopt the app are likely to increase as the rise in infections in recent weeks continues to rise. BC and Alberta are the only provinces that have not yet adopted the app. Alberta Prime Minister Jason Kenney has rejected the COVID Alert app. Ken...
Business, covid alert, COVID-19, exposure notification API, Healthcare

Updated COVID-19 Exposure Notification API May Reduce False Positives and Increase Overall Alerts

Apple and Google plan to update their joint exposure notification project, which forms the backbone of various COVID-19 exposure alert applications like Canada's own COVID alert, with more sophisticated risk assessment capabilities. In summary, the changes should allow the Exposure Notification API to quantify 'trusted' and 'unreliable' signals and use new algorithms to reduce the number of false positives. It could also mean that more people receive alerts about possible exposures to COVID-19. To get started, it's important to understand how the post notification system now works to put your changes in perspective. Currently, the API created by Apple and Google works by transmitting random, anonymous and non-identifying codes over Bluetooth from your smartphone. Other nearby pho...
Business, covid alert, Healthcare, Nova Scotia, prince edward island

COVID Alert will soon be available in Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island

Canada's COVID Alert App will soon be available on Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. In two press releases released by the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) on Friday, Justin Trudeau, Nova Scotia Prime Minister Stephen McNeil Y PEI Premier Dennis King announced the next availability. The COVID Alert app should now be available for download on the IOS App Store Y Google Play Store. Soon, Canadians in both provinces will be able to receive unique passwords from provincial health authorities used with COVID Alert to share potential contacts. For those unfamiliar with the app, it works with the Exposure Notification System developed by Apple and Google. That system uses Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) on a smartphone to exchange anonymous and random ID codes wit...
Business, contact tracing, COVID-19, Healthcare, notifications

Phone makers with aggressive battery management can delay contact tracing notifications

As Canada’s COVID Alert app moves through beta testing, reports have surfaced that some Android manufacturers that use aggressive battery saving techniques are making problems for contact tracing apps. A German website called Bild (via WinFuture) claims that Germany’s contact tracing app doesn’t receive COVID-19 exposure notifications on time, if at all, on many Samsung and Huawei phones. The publication blames battery management tweaks for delaying notifications. It’s important to note that battery management tweaks only affect notifications and not the contact tracing itself. On Android, Google incorporated the Exposure Notification API into Play Services, which integrates deeply into the operating system. This allows Bluetooth...
Business, Canada, contact tracing, covid alert, Government, Healthcare

Only 29 percent of Canadians are ‘very likely’ to download COVID Alert app: survey

A new Innovative Research Group Poll commissioned by OpenMedia says that 29 percent of Canadians were very likely to download the government’s ‘COVID Alert‘ contact tracing app. Further, 41 percent of people stated privacy concerns were the main reason for lack of confidence in the app. COVID Alert, initially supposed to launch at the beginning of July, is now making its way through beta testing. It relies on the Exposure Notification API designed by Apple and Google, and the government built the app alongside technology partners like BlackBerry and Shopify. In short, COVID Alert, in conjunction with the Exposure Notification system, works by using Bluetooth to trade anonymous, random codes between nearby devices securely. Each smartphone stores a local, secure record of anonymous i...
Business, Healthcare

Telus Ventures partners with Zebra Medical Vision to advance AI-based preventative care

Telus Ventures is collaborating with Israel-based Zebra Medical Vision to advance AI-based preventative healthcare in Canada. The medical imaging analytics company aims to grow its presence in North America and expand its AI solutions to new clinical care settings. The company’s technology, which has been approved by the FDA and Health Canada, provides a fully automated analysis of images generated using AI solutions to identify acute medical findings and chronic diseases. “We are pleased to join a great roster of recent investors and complement our existing portfolio through this collaboration with a known leader in AI innovation supporting clinical efficacy and significantly advancing the detection of conditions through machine...