Filipino app Traze will be soft-launched in four airports nationwide on Oct. 28 to streamline contact-tracing efforts as the country’s ports resume inbound and outbound travel, the Department of Transportation said Tuesday.
Traze, a QR code-based app, was co-developed by the Philippine Ports Authority and Cosmotech Philippines, Inc. and was first used to screen passengers and staff at seaports. It will be simultaneously launched at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Clark International Airport, Mactan-Cebu International Airport, and Davao International Airport.
How does it work?
All departing and arriving passengers at the four airports will be required to download the app on their mobile phones and create an account before heading to the airport. Those without mobile phones or gadgets will be redirected to the Malasakit Helpdesk and assisted to get their own unique QR code.
Passengers will then have this QR code scanned at designated areas in the airport. If a COVID-positive patient is identified, the app will notify other individuals who may have had contact with the patient so they can self-isolate immediately and adhere to other safety protocols.
The app will work with even slow data and internet connection–-no Bluetooth or GPS required.
By Nov. 28, the use of the Traze app will be made mandatory for all air passengers in all airports nationwide.
The Department of Transportation’s goal is to unify contact-tracing efforts nationwide, in partnership with the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, the Manila International Airports Authority, Civil Aeronautics Board, Clark International Airport Corp., and the Mactan-Cebu International Airport Authority.
Using it beyond airports
Transportation secretary Arthur Tugade directed the eventual use of the app across all modes of transportation as part of government efforts to speed up identification of individuals with COVID-19 to arrest the spread of the virus. Apart from nationwide usage, the app can also eliminate the hassle of manually filling up health declaration forms several times.
This unique QR code can also be used at any DOTr office nationwide.
The app is equipped with modules to trace individuals, establishments, logistics, along with transportation systems such as trains, vessels, airplanes, jeepneys, taxis, public utility vehicles, and even tricycles, among others.
What about my privacy?
Traze is compliant with the Data Privacy Act. Anonymous registration is allowed and submission of additional information such as mobile phone and e-mail address is optional.