Ontario invests in contact tracing tech
|The Ontario government provides Facedrive with $2.5 million through the Ontario Together Fund to deploy its wearable contact tracing technology, TraceSCAN.
TraceSCAN alerts users within a workplace who have been in close contact with individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19. The company anticipates manufacturing about 150,000 devices under this project to create 68 new jobs, including software, firmware and hardware engineers and machine learning specialists.
“In our fight against COVID-19, Ontario is continuing to support companies like Facedrive that are developing the innovative technology that adds new layers of defence against this global pandemic,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister, Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “Through the Ontario Together Fund, we will continue to make sure that companies like Facedrive have the resources they need to supply emergency products and innovative solutions during these challenging times, while creating skilled jobs for our province.”
Workers wear the device and the technology communicates with others within a workplace environment. If users are less than six feet apart, the device beeps to alert the users. If anyone in the working premises reports COVID-19 positive, HR or health and safety officials can log in to the online reporting dashboard and see who they have been in contact with and their risk level, then send an exposure notification.
Some of the businesses and organizations that are using TraceSCAN include Air Canada, LiUNA and Waywayseecappo First Nation.
“We are looking forward to working side by side with government institutions in our joint mission to create safe environments for our communities, restart our economy and get workers back on the job,” said Sayan Navaratnam, Chairman and CEO, Facedrive. “The Ontario Together Fund will be instrumental in helping us grow production volumes, invest in top talent, create jobs and ultimately establish TraceSCAN as a global leader and household name for contact tracing.”