Coronavirus Those exposed to the coronavirus may soon receive a call from a robot: “The system can put information about exposure to at least a hundred people at a time”

According to the final report of the project, call robotics could save the daily workload of 300-600 employees.

South Karelia In the social and health district, a project was implemented in Exote in September, which utilized automated calls, ie robotic calls, in tracing coronavirus infections.

Exote Development Director Merja Tepponen says that robotic calls can reach people exposed to the coronavirus much faster than the current system. In addition, robotic calls free up a lot of manpower when healthcare workers don’t have to make every call themselves. The project according to the final report the call robot is able to make five calls per second, or 18,000 calls per hour.

“As has been seen from all over Finland, there may be more than a hundred people exposed en masse. It takes a person at least 300 to 400 minutes to go through such a group, ”says Tepponen.

“Such a system can put information on exposure to at least a hundred people at a time.”

To put it bluntly, it usually takes one person to make a hundred calls or a hundred people to make one call to reach a hundred people. The call robot is able to make all one hundred calls almost simultaneously.

The project was implemented in collaboration with Eksote, the consulting company 2M-IT oy and the Finnish Independence Celebration Fund Sitra.

Tepposen according to the call robot system, it is possible to free health care workers to call the second round, in which those exposed are asked more specific questions.

“Time is saved and those exposed do not have time to expose new people. Because if they don’t get this information quickly, they will normally go to work and elsewhere, and a new group of exposed people will quickly become, ”Tepponen says.

According to Tepponen, it will take a few weeks to implement the system. Utilizing it, however, requires background work to ensure the role of each worker in tracing exposed people. The system does not require very wonderful in-service training, Tepponen says.

“Probably a little training is needed, but thinking about the process is a bigger thing.”

Robotic call there were 20 individuals in the test group who received two robotic calls in an imaginary coronavirus exposure situation. The call was made to all test subjects at a particular point in time. If the test subject was not reached, a text message was sent to him.

After the text message, the person had the opportunity to call back, at which point the original robotic call awaited him at the other end of the wire. If the test subject did not call back, the system automatically made a new call.

Tepponen says that the test subjects were aware of the upcoming robot call so that they could evaluate the service. According to Tepponen, they were generally positive about robot calls.

However, a positive reception is not a matter of course if the call robot system is widely deployed in an area. In this case, according to Tepponen, it is important to inform the residents of the area about the new system so that they can expect a call from the robot.

“It is worth telling the reason for the call robot in the area, which means that staff are freed up for other tasks,” says Tepponen.

“I would see that as the epidemic accelerates, we need technology to help with these things, to get enough staff for patient care and other tasks.”

Tepponen is unable to comment on the total price of the call robot system, as Eksote is currently bidding on call robotics. According to him, more important than the price is the time that staff spend on tracing infections and exposure.

The final report of the project estimates that reporting negative results would automatically free up the daily workload of 300-600 people nationwide. According to the report, this means a wage cost of around € 1-2 million per month.

However, the medical staff is not being replaced by robots. There are still things that, according to Tepponen, are still forced to be done manually by hand.

“However, the system speeds up and simplifies operations considerably. In other words, if there are now 700 exposed people, then this may mean that there will not be a thousand of them in a moment. ”

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