• MI COVID Alert now available in two additional languages

    Spanish, Arabic options make exposure app available to more Michiganders

    LANSING, Mich. – Today the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services
    (MDHHS) and Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget (DTMB)
    announced the launch of Spanish and Arabic language options for its anonymous
    exposure notification mobile app, MI COVID Alert.

    “It is critical that we continue to recognize and find ways to meet the diverse needs of
    communities across our state,” said Robert Gordon, director of MDHHS. “MI COVID
    Alert is an important tool in our continued efforts to bring the numbers of cases,
    hospitalizations and deaths down. We’re excited that this app update will break down
    language barriers and ensure access for more Michiganders.”

    When just 15% of a population used an exposure notification app like MI COVID Alert,
    researchers from Oxford University found a potential to reduce infections and deaths.
    Since the statewide launch of the English language version last month, MI COVID Alert
    has been downloaded 481,906 times. This represents nearly 10% of Michigan residents
    ages 18- to 64-years-old who are likely to have smartphones.

    Spanish and Arabic options are available through both the Apple and Google app
    stores. Users may also select and change languages by going into Settings, selecting
    General, and clicking Language and Region in order to choose Spanish or Arabic on
    their iOS or Android smartphones.

    Rather than using GPS, MI COVID Alert uses randomly generated phone codes and
    low-energy Bluetooth technology to detect distances between phones with the app. This
    technology protects the privacy of all users and prevents tracking someone’s exact
    location. No personally identifiable information is required or shared with other users
    and officials.

    When a person tests positive for COVID-19, they are eligible to receive a randomly
    generated PIN. This PIN allows individuals to share a positive test result anonymously
    in MI COVID Alert.

    After a positive test result is entered into the app, close contacts – anyone within six feet
    for 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period – will receive an anonymous push
    notification letting them know they may have been exposed to COVID-19 and the
    number of days since the possible exposure took place.
    App users can now retrieve a PIN three ways by:

    • Answering case investigation calls from their local health department or MDHHS
    • and requesting a PIN.
    • Calling their local health department.
    • Contacting the Michigan COVID-19 hotline at 2-1-1 or 888-535-6136 from 8 a.m.
    • to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
    Michigan worked with the app developer, as well as Apple and Google, to make MI
    COVID Alert compatible with apps in other states. Wisconsin, Virginia, Arizona, New
    York, Alabama, New Jersey and a growing number of other states have launched
    similar exposure notifications apps or have apps in development.

    MI COVID Alert works in conjunction with traditional contact tracing, proper mask
    wearing, hand washing and social distancing, but is not a replacement for these
    precautions or participation in contact tracing. People who are exposed to COVID-19
    should get tested and consider quarantining for 14 days from the date of possible
    exposure. If a person is still symptom-free on day 10, they can end quarantine early.
    However, they should continue monitoring for symptoms for four additional days.
    Individuals in need of testing may visit the COVID-19 website to find a testing location
    near them. They may also contact the Michigan COVID-19 hotline to locate and
    schedule an appointment.

    The exposure notification feature included in recent iOS and Android operating system
    updates only works with a companion app like MI COVID Alert, which is available for
    iOS and Android phones.

    Information around the COVID-19 outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is
    available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.

    MI COVID Alert Translations:

    Arabic

    Spanish

    COVID Gathering Guidelines:

    English

    Chinese

    Arabic

    Spanish

    Epidemic Order Overview UPDATED 12/18/2020:

    English

    Chinese

    Arabic

    Spanish

    Other Alternate Languages can be found by going to Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus

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