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WhatsApp Interactive Chatbot (for virtual screening)

We created an interactive chatbot application that will help in screening and engaging communities with factual information about Covid 19.

Photo of Brian Bransy
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This interactive chatbot application leverages on ICT and mobile technology to help in screening and engaging communities with factual information about Corona Virus. The use of USSD will also apply to communities without the technological capacity to connect via whatsaap.

What is the need are you focusing on?

The above images are are a clear depiction of how much destruction misinformation about Covid 19 can cause around the world. We aim to reach out to marginalized communities with accurate information from reliable sources such as WHO.

Which type of submission are you sharing?

  • Sharing an actual pivot your organization has already made

Describe the business pivot or adaptation in 3-4 sentences.

Our product is ideal for the World Health Organization information center as it aims to virtually screen individuals through an interactive Q&A session between all potential Covid19 victims and the chatbot while giving people precautions they need to take to protect themselves and others. We have already created a fully functional interactive watsaap chatbot by ourselves. This has enabled us to fully understand the final outlook and functionality of the Chatbot App we shall have after modification for Covid19. This will create a huge impact in Africa where most communities are affected by widespread misinformation and misconceptions about Corona virus, with whatsapp being Africa’s largest messaging platform with 192 million users. The impact will further extend to developed countries for better access to accurate information about Corona Virus. The global number of watsaap users will increase beyond 1.5 billion, through a WHO automated watsaap screening and information centre.

Do you plan to implement this solution?

  • Yes

Describe the impact that this solution will create in the world.

With the challenge being experienced in mass testing and screening of people globally, our virtual chatbot application will help in reaching out to more than 1.5 billion people at the comfort of their homes. They will virtually be asked about their travel history, symptoms if one is sick, their age and medical history to gauge their vulnerability with Covid 19 effects. They will also get factual information from WHO on how they need to practice social distancing wherever they are, washing of hands and self isolation if one is potentially sick with Covid 19. This will also help in contact tracing by governments as they aim to combat the Corona virus pandemic. This information will help all communities especially those in rural areas. The use of USSD will also apply to marginalized communities without access to internet connection. It will take us less than two days to configure the settings of our chatbot system for Covid 19 interactive chats as we build along our ultimate goal.

What is the name of your business or organization?

CODEINN

What does your business/company do? Whose needs does your business/company address? Who do you serve?

Our company does research in IT and real time implementation in the innovation sector. Coding is one of our key organs in the company, where we put together brilliant minds of software engineers as well as trainers to run our school of coding. Our product featured on Business Daily Newspaper on 2019 in Kenya after our sucessful collaboration with the County government of Kisumu. We created an interactive information Watsaap chatbot that is being used by many in need of instant and reliable information about Kisumu County. https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/corporate/tech/Kisumu-turns-to-WhatsApp-for-better-services/4258474-4938278-ghvpo3/index.html All one needs to do is to send the word “hello” from a WhatsApp account to a specific no.

What is your profession?

Software developer and Animator

Where are you located (country)?

Nairobi Kenya.

Where are you located (region)?

  • Eastern Africa

What industry is your business/company in?

  • Academia/Research

How many people does your business/company employ?

  • 0-10

How old is your business/company?

  • 2-5 years old

Which classification describes your organization/business?

  • Nonprofit/NGO

What kind of stakeholders and partnerships are needed to pursue this solution?

  • Funding- Grants
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- NGOs
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Government
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Grassroots/Community Groups

Do you need help building partnerships and finding partners?

  • No

What do you think are the main barriers to implementing this solution?

Governments of countries unwilling to give accurate data in terms of numbers of people at grassroots community levels will be the biggest barrier in implementing this initiative. We need governments to sensitize their people at grassroots levels about this interactive virtual screening. This will help in reaching out to as many people as possible via whatsaap without privacy concerns as the level of contact tracing and virtual screening is limited.

Are you aware of any open source efforts, hackathons or other collaborative efforts related to your solution? Are you participating in these efforts?

Yes, we are. Not at the moment. Our reasons for not participating in any relevant hackathon or collaborative efforts is due to past negative experiences. Some hackathons are not from genuine sources and ask questions for further interrogation of our technological systems. This is done with an aim of duplication/replication of various systems and ideas.

Website URL

codeinn.org

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Photo of Isaac Jumba
Team

It is exciting to read about your idea Brian Bransy . It will be interesting to see possible collaboration with Innocent Okeke  as Katherine Clayton has suggested.

A quick question I have is with regards to what partners are you working with or looking to work with at the moment, and how do you see the needs of the users changing long-term?

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