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Aug 17, 2021 / 11:26

Made-in-Vietnam apps support disadvantaged people amidst pandemic

As people’s movement and contacts are being restrained, technology plays a part in facilitating encounters and help fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

A made-in-Vietnam app, Zalo Connect, has been launched to support its users who are facing difficulties amid the increasingly serious evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The platform, managed by the National Technology Center for Covid-19 Prevention and Control, is integrated as a feature on the Zalo application.

Accordingly, Zalo users in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Dong Nai, Binh Duong, and Long An can easily seek emergency support from the community for foods, medicines, and other essential goods, or quickly connect with doctors and medical experts for remote medical advice.

Users can access this feature at the top of the Zalo Diary page. Depending on their needs, they can choose either Toi can giup do (I need help) or Toi muon giup do (I want to help). People just need to select the category and enter their full name, phone number, and address to become members of the platform.

 Zalo Connect, a platform to support Covid-hit Vietnamese. Photo: Nguyen Ngan

The information of the people in need will be shared and updated on the map system. People or organizations and volunteer groups in the same area can see the message and provide support.

Users should activate the feature to allow strangers to communicate with them on Zalo to ensure that helpers can connect with them quickly.

Individuals and organizations who want to help people in need can select the “I want to help” option to find information about those who need support in the surrounding area.

Through the application, individuals and charitable organizations could quickly detect and support those facing difficulties in their neighborhoods. This helps the community to support each other in a timely manner during the pandemic while ensuring social distancing measures.

According to Doan Quoc Anh, manager of the Zalo Connect project, a week after this app was launched, Zalo Connect has logged more than 98,000 calls and more than 130,000 messages requesting help.

Quoc Anh added that people’s needs for support are quite diverse. According to the project’s statistics, 93% of the request for support are related to food, 24% for necessities, 8% for medicine, and 7% for medical advice.

Zalo Connect is now available in the above-mentioned five provinces and will be available in other localities under social distancing in the next few days. This platform will be also upgraded with new features, Quoc Anh said.

Linking a network of medical workers

 Connecting with medical workers in the “Giúp tôi!” app. Photo: Nguyen Ngan

Another community connection platform named Giup toi (Help me) on iOS and Android app stores has recently been officially launched to support people during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The platform is aimed at rallying medical support nationwide for Covid-hit localities in Vietnam, where many medical facilities in hot spots are overloaded to treat severe Covid-19 patients.

The platform has contributed to reducing the burden on medical facilities by mobilizing a network of medical workers everywhere to help treat mild patients. Doctors and nurses can always remotely participate in the Covid-19 fight.

As long as a user has a request for advice, they can post it to the platform from a smartphone. The system will instantly find a suitable doctor and connect him to the user. Doctors and users can communicate with each other via chat or video call for a consultation.

Previously, a similar application called SOSmap has also been released to help benefactors successfully connect with underprivileged people across the country.

As people’s movement and contacts are being restrained, technology is playing a part in facilitating encounters and help fight the pandemic.