Google’s Coronavirus Testing Site is the Need of the Hour!

Must Read

Net Worth Of Jeff Bezos Is More Than Combined Net Worth of India’s Top 10 Richest People!

Jeff Bezos and the phrase 'World's Richest Person' has become synonym to each other. But after the...

Search Engine Optimization In Digital Era: Look Beyond Traffic

Search engine optimization, aka SEO, plays a vital role in today's online world, especially if it's about...

After Banning Apps, India To Clamp Down On Startup Investments From China

The recent border conflict between India and China has led to the Indian Government to actively take...

The Coronavirus testing site is live, all thanks to Google and Verily, the subsidiaries of Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL). Interestingly, with the launch, it’s already surrounded by the controversy.

In a press conference on the last Friday, US President Donald Trump announced the upcoming launch of a COVID-19 testing site developed by Google. According to this statement, the coronavirus testing site would provide preliminary screening for people with possible symptoms of the novel coronavirus and relay suspected cases to the nearest testing centre. Said site was supposed to be the combined effort of 1700 Google engineers in conjunction with federal authorities in order to provide COVID-19 screening in large capacities in different parts of the US.

However, people were left in confusion when Google denied these claims. Within a few hours, it was found out that the Coronavirus testing site was an initiative of Verily’s Project Baseline.

Advertisements

Soon after President Trump made his statement, Google clarified the confusion it had created by tweeting a statement by its sister company Verily, which, along with Google, is a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL)

The statement revealed that Verily (short for Verily Life Sciences, a life sciences research subsidiary of Alphabet) was in the process of developing a screening tool for coronavirus. Through this tool, Verily aimed to make preliminary testing for COVID-19 more accessible to people showing symptoms of the pandemic.
For this project, Verily collaborated with the California Government and was set to begin a pilot roll-out of the tool in the Bay area.

The tool was to be available via Project Baseline, Verily’s healthcare database which stores information about people’s health with the aim to conduct community-based research.

After the official statement was made, the tool was rolled out a day earlier than expected on Sunday, albeit available only in two Bay area counties.

Verily has stated that this is a pilot run and the eventual goal for the site is to expand as much as they can.

Advertisements

Coronavirus Testing Site

The screening tool is available in the Covid-19 subdomain of project baseline’s website.

The page lists the eligibility criteria for screening and then based on that lets people who qualify take the screening test.

The screening test asks the informant about the presence of Covid-19 symptoms, based on currently accepted guidelines. If the symptoms seem severe enough to warrant a lab test, the person is put in queue to get tested at the nearest testing centre for free.

However, to get screened, one needs to sign in with their Google account, a requirement many people have found suspicious. But the site claims to encrypt all user data.

There Are Issues As Well

While, on the surface, the initiative seems to make things simpler for people in the Bay Area counties it covers, many users have reported running into problems.

A number of users raised concerns about the test not screening them as being eligible for a lab test despite reporting symptoms.

When approached about this, a verily spokesperson person said, “The initial question is meant to ensure that anyone who is seriously ill does not come to our sites because they are not prepared to provide medical attention,” probably referring to the fact that those who are seriously ill should consult a professional ASAP.

However, the way this is executed seems to be counterproductive.

Another obvious issue is the limited availability of the test, but Verily has been consistent in its intent to make it widely available as soon as possible.

At the same time, the site’s proclaimed aim is to provide free testing only for individuals showing significantly severe symptoms. In that respect, it fails to fill the worldwide gap in the detection of mild cases which are more likely to contribute to the spread of the disease.

Additionally, on Monday, just one day after going live, the Coronavirus testing site claimed to reach full capacity in its testing and referrals. This raised another wave of concern in individuals but Verily chose to keep the maximum testing capacity of the feature confidential.

Since it is the beginning, a lot is being passed off as logistical issues, however, in the wider context and the significantly high number of cases in the Bay area, all bumps must be smoothed as soon as possible.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

The Leaked Video Of Pixel 5 Is Quite Revealing!

Google never stops to surprise us, and Pixel 5 is no different. A recent leaked video of...

A New Xiaomi 108MP Camera Smartphone May Debut Soon!

In November 2019, Xiaomi propelled its first smartphone with a 108MP camera. In the last six months, the smartphone major has launched...

Instagram Reels In India: A Possible Death For The Indian Alternatives Of TikTok?

After the Indian Government banned the popular short-form video app TikTok along with 58 other Chinese-origin apps, many ‘homegrown’ or Indian-made Tiktok...

How People Set Their Passwords: 123456 Is The Most Common One [STUDY]

Do you know why hackers quickly gain access to your system or online accounts? It's because the passwords are...

Will The Ban On TikTok Be Revoked?

The ban on TikTok is the talk of the town. All hell broke loose for Tiktok when the popular short-form video platform...

Global 5G Chipset Market: $22.41 Billion By 2026, Driven by 5G Smartphones

As the world has started shifting from 4G to 5G era, the global 5G chipset market has started attracting the eyeballs of...

In-Depth: Dprime

Will The Online Food Delivery Market in India End Up Becoming A Two-Horse Race?

It's pretty much evident that the food delivery space in India is all set to get riled up soon enough as one...

Fantastic 4: Four Day Work Week A Flashpoint Of Innovation?

It has been an idea that has been mooted by many, perhaps also somewhat sceptically. From being a dark horse to becoming...

TikTok Is Facing The Wrath Of People Who Love It The Most

Ever since the popular social media app TikTok entered India, it has been growing very aggressively in terms of users. Within a...

More Articles Like This