Unfortunately, the new coronavirus called Covid-19, is the theme of the moment and has changed our entire routine. This viral disease, which quickly reached the pandemic level, appeared in China in late 2019 and has already been responsible for more than 4,000 deaths. In Portugal, today (March 19), we have 3 deaths and 785 infected. The country is in a state of emergency and the future is uncertain. The technology may come to play a very important role in the fight against this disease and there are several tools that are already being used to discover the best way to deal with the coronavirus. Let’s see how technology is helping to understand Covid-19!
Covid-19 spreads at an unbelievable pace and has been a test for big data, data analytics and artificial intelligence tools. The World Health Organization has already said that artificial intelligence and big data will be key tools in responding to this virus. In China, thermal scanners were installed at train stations in major cities. And what do these scanners do? They check the temperature of all passengers, being able to immediately identify suspected cases.
The robots were used by the Chinese to go through hospital wards and disinfect spaces, using ultraviolet light. In addition, there is a four-wheeled robot with a drone that “throws” disinfectant onto the streets of China.
According to research carried out by Renmin Hospital at Wuhan University, EndoAngel Medical Technology Company and China University of Geosciences, deep learning has been extremely useful in combating this pandemic. According to the researchers, a deep learning method was tested with CT scans of 51 patients who contracted the disease and showed 95% accuracy. This means that the deep learning model created presented a performance similar to that of radiologists, which is very positive because it relieves pressure and the workload of these professionals and improves the diagnosis.
According to CNN, there are about 3 million surveillance cameras in China and authorities are able to access the information they make available to detect material flaws and suspicious cases. Drones are also important for facial recognition that can identify people who are on the street without wearing a mask. These measures are raising ethical questions, as they jeopardize citizens’ privacy and freedom.