Tuesday, May 28, 2024

COVID-19 app goes live – have you downloaded it yet?

It’s hoped a new, free, check-in app designed to make it easier for Queensland’s hospitality businesses and their customers to stay COVID safe will boost the state’s contact tracing efforts.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Check In Qld app had been extensively trialled over the last few weeks and had “come out tops”.

“It simplifies compliance with Public Health Directions for all hospitality venues, with patrons and customers able to self-check-in and have their information stored securely,” the Premier said.

“Once people have used the Check In Qld app at one business, it remembers your details, saving you time in the future and providing easy on-going, check-in across all participating venues,” she said.

“The more businesses sign up, the better it will be for all of us.

“Having a safe and consistent check-in app has been a top priority, as we embrace the ‘new normal’ of a COVID safer environment.”

She said the app removed some of the everyday burdens of COVID-19 restrictions for licenced venues, cafes and their customers.

“It’s everyone’s responsibility to help keep our community safe, and effective contact tracing still remains at the heart of our public health response,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“The new Check In Qld app is free, contactless, secure and convenient and I know it will be embraced by venues and people right across the state.”

Testing and trials of the new app began in January at selected venues from Cairns to Ipswich with venue operators giving it an enthusiastic thumbs up.

Doug Meagher, Venue Manager at the Orion Hotel in Springfield said the new app saves a whole lot of time for his staff and makes access much smoother for everyone.

“Rolling out this app is a massive step forward for Queensland in maintaining a COVID safe environment,” Mr Meagher said.

Customers will need to download the app from Google Play or Apple App Stores and enter their details one time only. At participating venues, customers can then ‘Check in Now’ by opening the app and using venue’s Check In QldQR code.

“Customers can add the names of the other people in their party, show venue staff their successful check-in screen, and then enjoy their time out knowing they have helped keep Queenslanders safe,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

More than 204 businesses in the trial have registered and are using the new app.

More than 29,000 customers have so far checked in at these venues.

Minister for Health and Ambulance Services, Yvette D’Ath said the app had been endorsed by Queensland Health and would play a critical role in the state’s contact tracing efforts.

“The new Check In Qld app will help Queensland Health’s hard-working contact tracing team to quickly identify and assist anyone who may have been exposed to COVID-19,” she said.

“Acceptance of the app will strengthen our efforts to unite and recover from COVID-19 by ensuring contact tracing can be quickly carried out in a time-critical situation. 

“People can have confidence, knowing check in details will be stored securely by the Queensland Government for 30 to 56 days and will only be used if required for contact tracing purposes.

“Businesses outside the hospitality sector can also take up the app on a voluntary basis.”

Minister for Digital Economy, Leeanne Enoch said the Check In Qld app was based on the ACT’s model.

“From Cairns to Ipswich, I thank the many businesses and venues which enthusiastically participated in testing, to help deliver a safe and reliable app for Queensland,” Ms Enoch said.

“Businesses and venues statewide are now strongly encouraged to register to use the app online. https://www.covid19.qld.gov.au/check-in-qld

“Once registered, they will also be provided a business starter kit, which includes display posters with a unique QR Code.”

By using the Check In Qld app, businesses will not need to manually collect or manage the information.

The data entered into each customer’s app will be stored securely by the Queensland Government when they check in and will help to ensure it is readily available to contact tracers if required.

It is not mandatory to use the Check In Qld app however all hospitality businesses must continue to collect and store contact details electronically.

Other electronic methods include online fillable forms, membership card scanners, online booking systems and a digital spreadsheet.

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