Table 1 Digital technologies and their impact on public-health strategies

From: Digital technology and COVID-19

 Digital technology
Public-health measuresIoTBig dataAIBlockchain
1. Monitoring, surveillance, detection and prevention of COVID-19 (directly related to COVID-19)+++++++++
Examples1. Real-time tracking and live updates in various online databases in the USA, UK and China1. Modeling of disease activity, potential growth and areas of spread1. Detection of COVID-19 from chest imaging (X-ray) (Beijing Hospital)1. Manufacturing and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines once they are available
 2. Live tracking of the at-risk vicinity in Korea (; Modeling of the preparedness and vulnerability of countries in fighting a disease outbreak2. Prognostication of disease progression via clinical data, imaging and AI2. Insurance claims from COVID-related illness and death
2. Mitigation of impact (indirectly related to COVID-19)++++++++++
Examples1. Virtual clinics (PingAn, China)1. Business modeling on pharmaceutical supplies for various medications1. AI to automatically diagnose medical conditions unrelated to COVID-19 (Zhongshan Ophthalmic Eye Center, China)1. Distribution of patients’ regular medication to the local pharmacy or patients’ doorstep
 2. Public information dissemination via WhatsApp in Singaporea2. Modeling of the utility of operating theaters and clinics with manpower projections2. Medical ‘chat bots’ to address public inquiries on COVID-19 
  1. The likely impact of digital technologies on (1) disease monitoring, surveillance, detection and diagnosis, and (2) mitigation of impact: +, low (no clear example yet in either official government website); ++, moderate (one clear example); +++, high (two or more examples). Gray shading indicates potential applications that are not described in the literature thus far but should be considered by technology companies or research groups worldwide to help battle against COVID-19. Additional examples beyond those mentioned in the text are included in this table.
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