English | Dzongkha Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Druk Trace use becoming common


Feb 22, 2021

The Druk Trace App initially received a lukewarm response from the public. But it is different now. The app is being widely used by people. Going by the health ministry’s records, users have done almost two million scans through Druk Trace App since its launch in April last year.

And on average over 70,000 people across the country scan the app daily. According to the ministry, this figure is quite impressive, indicating that people are now making good use of the app.

The Druk Trace App is one of the pivotal tools to combat the pandemic through prompt tracing of potential COVID-19 cases in the country. People have to use the app while visiting shops, monasteries, offices, public transport sectors, and other public places.

“I use the Druk Trace App and even advise my family members to use it sincerely. When the app does not work, I manually register my name and the mobile number in the register book at the place of my visit,” said Kencho, a resident of Thimphu.

“Some people use the App when they enter our shops. For those who don’t use the app, I ask them to write their names and phone numbers in the register book,” said Buddhi Maya Rai, a shopkeeper in Thimphu.

“Now, more people are using Druk Trace compared to the first lockdown. Before, people were reluctant to use the app. That could be since not many were aware of the app and its benefit. They won’t visit our shops if we ask them to scan the code,” added Dawa Norbu, also a Shopkeeper.

Apart from shops, banks are the most visited places by the public. Hence, they ensure that not a single person enters or exits without using the app or registering their personal details.

“In Bank of Bhutan with the support from JSS and our own staff DeSuups, we are strictly monitoring and ensuring that customers scan the Druk trace app. So without scanning, we are not allowing anybody to enter inside. Those people without the app and without smartphones, we register their details in a logbook,” said Dorji Wangchuk a DeSuup at the BoB.

The IT team at the health ministry said repeated mention about the importance of the Druk Trace App during the press briefs encouraged people to use the App.

“Druk trace has been advocated in many press briefs before the lockdown and after the lockdown. During the opening of the lockdown, Lyonchhen and the Health Minister highlighted the importance of the use of the Druk trace and how we are supposed to use the app. Also, the ministry has been advocating through social media platforms and also we have been sending scroll messages on BBS TV,” said Garab Dorji, the Chief  ICT Officer with the health ministry.

He says users have to update the App periodically to avoid unsuccessful scanning. That aside, in case of problems related to Android smartphones, the IT team renders the necessary supports.

Choni Dema

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