BOONE, N.C. — Appalachian State University and AppHealthCare, the local public health department, are encouraging use of a COVID-19 contact tracing mobile application — built using Apple and Google technology — released by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS).
App State and AppHealthCare are asking university faculty, staff and students, as well as members of the greater community, to participate in this voluntary program by downloading and activating the free SlowCOVIDNC app from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store and turning on notifications.
“The SlowCOVIDNC is an important additional resource for Mountaineers — and everyone in our state — to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and help protect our campus and the surrounding area,” said App State Chancellor Sheri Everts.
“Supporting the health of our community is our top priority,” said Jennifer Greene, health director for AppHealthCare. “As we continue working collaboratively to help protect the health of individuals and our community as a whole, we hope our community will utilize this mobile technology as another tool in our toolkit.”
The app sends notifications to users who may have been in close contact with someone in the last 14 days who has tested positive and elected to share their report through the app. The date of the positive test is the only information that is shared.
According to NCDHHS:
- The app was designed with user privacy and safety first in mind.
- The app never collects or processes any location or personally identifiable information, and it allows users to opt out at multiple checkpoints.
- Individuals who test positive will not be identified.
- The app anonymously notifies users who have been exposed to the novel coronavirus.
The University of North Carolina (UNC) System announced Sept. 22 that all 17 of its institutions are participating in the statewide rollout of the app.
SlowCOVIDNC users who test positive for COVID-19 and wish to share their result anonymously with others may obtain a unique PIN by contacting AppHealthCare or Community Care of North Carolina, to ensure that positive reports entered in the app are first confirmed.
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About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the Southeast, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Appalachian Experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and to embrace diversity and difference. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian enrolls nearly 21,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.