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Maryland launches app Tuesday notifying residents of possible COVID-19 exposure

WJLA – Washington D.C. logo WJLA – Washington D.C. 11/10/2020 ABC7 Staff
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On Tuesday, the state of Maryland launched an app that notifies residents if they have been exposed to someone who tested positive for the coronavirus. 

The system is called MD COVID Alert, and uses Bluetooth Low Energy technology.  The state says that the app does not collect or share information on a person's identity or whereabouts, rather it uses random ID's assigned to a person once they've been near someone who tests positive. 

The technology is already in use in other states around the country, including neighboring Virginia

The app is used in conjunction with traditional contact tracing methods where staffers call people identified as physical contacts with infected individuals. 

Users who get notified about possible exposure are advised to get tested, monitor their symptoms, and quarantine.  They also get a date of possible exposure. 

The state says the technology does not automatically notify people of exposure.  Residents need to opt in to the service by enabling notifications in their phone settings and selecting Maryland as their region. 

The service is free and the state says the app can be disabled at any time. 

For more information about the app, click here.  

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