How to make your contact tracing smarter,
by leveraging your real time data.

Release Date: 07/12/2020

Author: Grace Maher

With the current pandemic, it becomes increasingly difficult for educational institutions to check in on their students’ well being and welfare, and to ensure that campuses are being used safely. Splunk understands that given a rapidly changing environment, educational institutions require a flexible data platform that can answer questions ranging from “Is this server up” right the way through to “did this student enter block A when they arrived on the campus”.

Splunk’s new offerings of Workplace and Interaction Analytics, are targeted at these highly sensitive, and closed environments. Workplace Insights provides a set of pre-built dashboards and reports to support closed campus workplaces such as healthcare and educational establishments. You can easily and quickly uniquely identify employees or students within your buildings, and understand if where they are is highly populated, or not. This makes it much easier to maintain safe distance between staff and students at all times, even in break periods or study areas.

Likewise, if you become aware a student or staff member has been infected with Covid-19, you can utilise the tracking dashboards to understand where this person has gone, other potential interactions, and any areas that may require additional cleaning or containment measures. This also prevents unnecessary closure of buildings that have not been involved in any outbreak, maintaining business as usual where possible.

Splunks Interaction Analytics takes this secure campus protocol one step further, allowing you to utilise Wifi access point data to support excess density, contact tracing and traffic pattern optimisation. For example, if an area becomes highly populated between classes, you can review in real time and either put in physical containment measures, such as locking doors to create a one way system, or by moving classes to a less dense area.

By leveraging the wifi monitoring data, we can see not only if a person has been in an area where a potential outbreak has occurred, but also how long they spent, how close they may have been, and if it is required for that individual to now isolate themselves due to their potential exposure. 

You can prioritise contact tracing by having a pre-built list of individuals who have exceeded a safe exposure duration, to hopefully speed up the process of highlighting potential transmission. Exposure limits can have external factors built in, for example, 100 students gathered outside in a social distanced way may be fine, however if 100 students entered a single lecture hall, you could have an automated SMS sent to remind people to safely social distance.  Layering student schedules, badge reading throughout secure access buildings, and even local authentication within libraries or study areas, provides a clear understanding of where an individual may go next if they are exposed, to prevent any further transmission in real-time. 

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