The Better 'Ole
Boris and Dido are looking envious.
India has decided to open-source the Co-WIN platform it created to arrange bookings for COVID-19 vaccinations. Doctor Ram Sewak Sharma, CEO of India’s National Health Authority, took to YouTube to proclaim the nation is “ready to offer this Co-WIN platform as a public good” to the nations of the world. “It is being given as …
The overly cynical side of me thinks "Perhaps they're opening it in the hope that someone else will fix the glitches?"
But still, it's the right thing to do, and it should be no harm to them; it doesn't seem likely that the alternative was to sell it to other countries.
And, yes, a few more eyeballs may help with the bugs.
The site started off as appointment booking site for the covid jab. It has since evolved into a site where you can walk-in to a vaccination centre without prior appointment get your jab and get your details in the site and track your 2nd jab details etc.
So the digital divide part isn't as much a challenge now as it was when the site was launched.
I observe over the last few years a rather consistent "everything to do with India whether it be a cost efficient indigenous mission to Mars or offering to share Covid related assets with other countries for free" - is treated with gleeful disdain and a undisguised attempt to belittle by some of The Reg authors.
What's the plot? Where is the editorial balance? How about letting the readers decide and save your personal brand of ammo for something truly deserving (our very own PPE scandal perhaps?).
British news is consistent in this regard, and author's been a twat for a long time. I mean, who describes a character as "Doctor <insert name>" ? What's wrong with the universal Dr ? Worried that people wouldn't get the cool joke about how "Simon" doesn't think the man's a "doctor" ? Yeah, maybe you should have also put it in quotes in bold letters with rainbow colors, too.
This is a tech site, but it doesn't mention what CoWin is, or where to find it, because the author can't be depended upon to do his job description. It's here:
As the dashboard says, there are 340 million odd jabs done to date, and over 350 million have registered on the portal. 120 million vaccinations were done in June, with about 160 million likely in July.
The process for registration is you enter your mobile #, get an OTP, use that to authenticate in and log in with your national ID (Aadhaar). Then you book a spot at one of the local centers and go get your jab. The certificate is uploaded for you automatically, registered against your national ID. You can link it to your passport # too, for travel.
One of the weaknesses of this is lack of push notifications, since the government doesn't want to pass analytics through IIOS/Android ecosystems and wants its own national notification backhaul - a project in development. However, CoWin has opened up the APIs that let developers implement push notifications, and there already exists popular push options for Telegram (and I think Signal). Lots of people used that to get notified.
There's the question of how to do this for those outside the digital divide. India has 1.5 billion registered SIMs in use: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_number_of_mobile_phones_in_use. Of these, nearly 800 million are unique users, out of an adult population of 900m (the size of the electorate in the last general election). Over 550 million have smartphones. It's fair to say they have most of the adult population covered - at least near universal coverage of urban areas that are the most likely places for transmission.
You won't get this from Simon though, even though he's supposed to be a "Journalist".
The author of this article does not have any clue. He has written this article by just by doing Google research and not realizing how Co-Win works & how it helps.
This is one platform that really worked and at scale. In scale its like the entire nation of UK x 2, logging in every day to book their covid shots (availability of shots and platform performance are two different things - now availability is also better and around 5 million people are getting vaccinated daily). 10 Millions+ hits daily, yet this platform worked and gave results instantly.
Show a comparison and lets talk data.
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