GUWAHATI: The whole world is currently facing an unprecedented crisis amidst the ongoing Coronaviruspandemic outbreak.
As, the health fraternity is working round the clock to assist in detection and curefor COVID-19, the impact however is affecting allied sectors like education, health and the world isfacing a huge misinformation challenge at the same time.Based in Guwahati, Assam – Northeast Indiadigital accelerator NE8x, launched the timely initiative with #ChallengeCOVID19 online aggregatordashboard to track the outbreak of COVID19 for providing resources, checklist on thepandemic.’
Keeping a close track of the escalating COVID19 outbreak as reported by our twocommunity fellows in Germany and China respectively, our team launched the online dashboard onMarch 14th on NE8x Health with three dedicated initiatives that followed later and was integrated onthe platform including: www.verify-news.org (News verification and fact checking network by NE8xMedia), www.essentials-online.in (On-demand services acceleration for MSMEs by NE8x SmartHub)and www.eLearning-India.in (An open learning and upskilling initiative by NE8x SmartEdu).
With time,we understood that the situation is going to impact some of the major sectors in society and we divedin to assist the community with best possible resources available’ says founder & serial entrepreneurRoy RiddhinilExplaining more on the initiative, Anisha currently heading the Verify-News.org initiative undertakenfor COVID-19 related fact checking, news-source verification and myth-buster says ‘Misinformationhas been a huge problem we are dealing with during the COVID19 crisis.One of the key parts of theresponse to COVID-19 has been the fight against False information – with misleading information andmyths related to healthcare information spreading around the world on leading social media platformsspecifically whatsapp forwards’ Driving the awareness campaign the team is working on the 6-stepschallenge that comprises hashtags encouraging to stay and work from home, washing hands, socialdistancing and wearing masks on showing symptoms.
On the media front, it is helping to train onlinereporters, citizen journalists and students from the country across mass communication / journalismdomain by developing short training modules, access to our media mentors & tools on theirplatform.Under the Verify-News.org initiative, leading media organisation (mostly in digital contentsector) have come forward together to create a news source and verification network for digital mediaportals to fight fake news and misinformation
Online dashboards helps fetch data and convey a real-time mapping of the spreading disease.Publicand media can use dashboards and maps to display data with real-time mapping as it helps to speedawareness and preparedness ‘Data and technology, in today’s age plays an integral role for assistinghealthcare professionals to manage and monitor diseases’ says.Arpan, Tech Head at NE8xSmartHub.
At this unprecedented situation, the on-demand services sector is experiencing a hugegrowth opportunity as only essential services have being allowed to remain operational during theoutbreak.As digital acceleration is a core part of NE8x, the team has added an online assistance & acceleration platform www.essentials-online.in for the local business by setting up their businessservices online.
NE8x SmartHub has helped launching web portals, online shops, digital listing and fullsuite of digital marketing solutions for essential services providers and small medium enterprisesincluding small businesses in pharmacy, grocery, beauty, repairs, wellness, rentals, logistics sector & beyondMentoring the team on this cause, NE8x Advisor Dr.Jagdish Behera has been helping the team withhis expertise on telemedicine and is closely monitoring www.ChallengeCOVID19.org portal with his team at Masterdoctor Wellness that is assisting the team as health analytics partner for the initiativewith NE8x Health.
The NE8x team has compiled a resource-list by conducting surveys with citizencentric reports on how their community is tackling COVID19.
NE8x Health also has set up an onlinesymptom checker tool for crosschecking symptoms and conditions for non-clinical assessment andhelping people know the commonly recorded symptoms for self-risk preparedness.’Our summerinternship saw a huge demand this year, as its conducted virtually and campus ambassadors networkin NE8x SmartEdu initially helped drive huge engagement for the COVID19 preparedness onlinemodules’ says Abantika currently heading the www.eLearning-India.in initiative under NE8xSmartEdu.As educational institutions are conducting their academic activities mostly online andstudents are getting guidance from parents at home, this is a perfect opportunity to help upskill themand help make good career oriented decisions.
With our diverse range of edu modules and pool ofinfluencers across domains, we are also focussing on vocational and alternative career paths that areunique for learning purposes among student community and emerging as high demand career optionamong the unemployed sector who have lost jobs due to the crisis.
We aim to take this initiativeforward by providing them self-sustaining career option and also upgrader their resume and skill-setsWith initiatives like these, at the hour of COVID19 outbreak and support from government agencies,health organisations, media and communities the ongoing challenge to Coronavirus its truly a battlethat needs to be fought together for the imminent threat world faces from it across domains that areinter-related.
Encouraging the citizens to avoid panic, maintaining basic hygiene and social distancingcan not only save lives but also help set an example of a worldwide revolution that despite sacrificinglives, came together as one with the advent of healthcare and technology and solved thechallenge.
Advances in tech for digitizing small and medium enterprises, thereby skilling the workforcewill help tackle the crisis on economic front in the post-COVID19 scenario.