KUWAIT CITY, Apr 19: The Ministry of Health has launched a mobile application, called to monitor home quarantined people as the country starts a massive operation to repatriate citizens who were stranded abroad due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.
The app’ called ‘Shlonik’ (colloquial Kuwaiti for, how are you), will help the MoH gauge quarantined people’s abidance by relevant rules, Dr. Mona Al-Khabaz, head of the ministry’s team in charge of digital monitoring of the home quarantined people, told KUNA.
She clarified that all returnees had to install the app on their mobile phones and turn the Bluetooth on.
Shlonik will track their movement and notify the ministry if they broke the quarantine rules and left home, Al-Khabaz said.
In this case, the MoH will immediately contact the concerned person and ask him/her to send a live photo to check his/her location, she said.
She unveiled that the ministry teams will also send messages daily at random times to the quarantined people, asking them to send a live selfies, which will be examined and matched with their previously sent photos.
The interactive app will also help doctors communicate with the quarantined people and follow up their health conditions and detect coronavirus symptoms, such as sneezing, cough, fever and breathing difficulties, Al-Khabaz indicated.
She noted that if a person had any of these symptoms, the ministry will swiftly send preventive health teams to make all medical checkups and transfer the person to a hospital if necessity arises.
She added that Shlonik app has other features, mainly the latest health updates, a health Bot, a check-in for quarantined patients, vitals check and a communication link to MOH medical teams.
Al-Khabaz emphasized that the Ministry of Health has trained about 100 doctors to use Shlonik to follow up the quarantined people.
She stated that violators of the quarantine rules will be brought to accountability and could be jailed for three months or pay a fine of up to KD 5,000 (over USD 15,000) or both.
Al-Khabaz also noted that the ministry will distribute barcoded bracelets to all returnees to make sure they will not leave their homes.
For his part, the ministry spokesperson Dr. Abdullah Al-Sanad identified the conditions set by the ministry to allow any returnee to opt for home quarantine not the state quarantine facilities.
The returnee’s health condition must be stable and has a separate well-ventilated bedroom for quarantine, he said, adding that it is preferable that there is a separate a toilet.
It is also necessary to identify specific individuals to serve the quarantine person at home, he stressed.
He emphasized that the Ministry of Health is keen on implementing all preventive measures to maintain safety of returnees and the whole society and to prevented the spread of the deadly virus.
On Saturday, Minister of Health Sheikh Dr. Basel Al-Sabah affirmed that personnel of the department were prepared to receive Kuwaiti citizens repatriating from abroad.
He urged adherence to health measures and guidelines to ensure safe return of the citizens from abroad, warning that authorities would not be lenient with anyone who may breach the health precautions during the operation.
The Cabinet, at an extraordinary session on Monday, adopted a phased process to bring back tens of thousands of Kuwaiti citizens abroad who have remained there amid the ongoing coronavirus crisis.