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24/07/2021

Company behind HSE Covid Tracker App nominated for top award

Company behind HSE Covid Tracker App nominated for top award

Cian Ó'Maidín founded Waterford company NearForm

The Waterford company behind the Covid-19 Tracker App has been nominated for an Irish Red Cross Humanitarian Award. 

Nearform, which is based in Tramore, Waterford was nominated for the Innovation for Change Award, which recognises the achievements of an individual or team who have had a positive impact on society through innovation. 

After being approached by the HSE in March, NearForm gathered a remote team overnight and set about creating a Covid-19 contact tracing app. 

The software solutions company had a working prototype of the Covid Tracker App within 10 days and it was launched in July, with over a quarter of Ireland’s population downloading it within the first 36 hours, making it one of the most successfully launched contact tracing apps in the world.  

NearForm supported the Irish Government and the HSE in donating the underlying code to the Linux Foundation Public Health, under the name Covid Green. This enabled other public health authorities across the world to use it for free to build their own apps. 

Covid Green goes beyond the basic exposure notification and includes symptom checking, statistical updates, public health information to put the power in people's hands to protect themselves and others while helping to break transmission chains. 

The winners of the Irish Red Cross Humanitarian Awards will be announced in a live virtual ceremony on December 15 at 7pm. The recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award will also be honoured on the night. John Lonergan, who took home the Lifetime Achievement award in 2019, will give a keynote speech at the event. 

The awards seek to recognise those who have had a humanitarian impact on the lives of others through volunteering, skill sharing, storytelling or fundraising, and will highlight the efforts of those who have given a voice to humanitarian issues. People are invited to register for free tickets for the event at humanitarianawards.ie.

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