HONOLULU (KHON2) — They are convenient and readily available at many stores, at-home COVID-19 test kits are becoming a go-to for many but without reporting those results their close contacts may never know. The AlohaSafe Alert is looking to change that with a new update to the phone application.
Lynn Miyahira who is part of the AlohaSafe Alert team said people are now able to upload their positive results from their home tests.
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“Especially Now that people are going to concerts, they’re going to events, you don’t know that people you’re necessarily sitting next to, who’ve may have been exposed,” Miyahira said. “This is going to be one of the only ways that you’ll be able to tell them that you may have been exposed to COVID-19.”
The self COVID-19 test results will not be added to the state’s weekly case count, the Hawaii State Department of Health will only add lab results for now.
But officials said the exposure notification from the phone application could be a useful tool to spread awareness if being near someone with the virus.
“Whether you are within six feet of somebody for 15 minutes or more. That’s what it’s checking in,” Miyahira said. “It’s using Bluetooth energy, not your phone number, your location or anything like that. It’s just pinging other phones to check distance.”
The AlohaSafe Alert application is no longer available for iPhone users in the app store, instead, the notification exposure function has been added to the phone’s settings.
People can turn on the exposure notification settings to be alerted of any close contacts, people can also report a positive COVID-19 at-home test result in those settings as well.
Andriod phone users can continue using the AlohaSafe phone application, the feature to report test results can be found once the application is open.
Miyahira said, “I suspect that a lot of people are going to start using it again, now that we can self report a home test.”
More than 10,000 users have reported positive results to the phone application since it launched back in January 2021.
The department of health continues to recommend a five-day quarantine for those who are unvaccinated and exposed, those who are vaccinated are not required to quarantine.
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Regardless of vaccination status, a test should be taken five days after exposure.