Coronavirus app from Apple and Stanford aims at first responders

The app includes a screening tool as well as information from Stanford physicians and scientists.

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Stanford Medicine and Apple have teamed up on a COVID-19 screening app for police, firefighters, paramedics and other first responders in the Bay Area. The iOS app, called First Responder COVID-19 Guide, offers a screening tool that can help determine if a coronavirus test is recommended, as well as information from Stanford physicians and scientists on protecting yourself from the virus and other updates on the pandemic

"First responders are the individuals who continue to be out in the field serving our community and continue to be exposed to individuals with the virus," said Stanford Health Care's Catherine Krna in a release on Wednesday. "Our communities look to them to provide stability and order, and we as a health care system have an obligation to keep them safe as they work to protect us all."

While this new app is focused on first responders, Apple in March created a COVID-19 website and app for the general public with a screening tool and other information about the coronavirus outbreak.

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus, has rapidly spread across the globe. The World Health Organization on March 11 declared the outbreak a pandemic. There are now over 1.5 million confirmed cases globally, with more than 432,000 in the US as of Thursday.

Data collected by the first responder app won't be shared with Stanford or Apple without permission, according to the release. Stanford Health Care is offering priority drive-thru COVID-19 testing to first responders in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties, and said it hopes to expand that to other essential workers, such as grocery store clerks and public service personnel. 

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