Tech4COVID19: Portuguese Startups Come Together to Fight the Virus

Mon 16 Mar 2020

All over Portugal, hundreds of entrepreneurs are working on platforms to help fight the coronavirus.

Hundreds of Portuguese entrepreneurs are taking advantage of the possibility of working remotely to contribute to the fight against Covid-19. Some startups are working "to minimize the impact" by activating the teams in remote work mode. What at the end of last week was an informal group of 25 companies from the Founders Founders community, became, two days later, a movement with more than a hundred members involved and already 12 projects in progress.

"By taking preventive measures, we intend to make our contribution to controlling the exponential growth in the number of infected people, which could put the lives and well-being of the teams, their families and the community in general at risk. In this context, we will continue to satisfy our customers, motivate our teams, and boost the economy", explains Rui Couto, Infraspeak's VP of Growth.

The members of the movement are companies in areas as varied as cybersecurity, health, maintenance, human resources, consulting, cloud services, e-commerce, medical devices, among many others. The movement is called tech4COVID19 and currently has about 12 technological projects under development.

"There are so much talent, potential and a capacity to do things so big inside the Portuguese startups that our motivation was to direct this potential to initiatives that would help everyone in this difficult phase", says Felipe Ávila da Costa, spokesman for the group, quoted in a statement.

The idea of tech4COVID19 is divided into several points:

  • improving the tracking of contagion networks, facilitating video calls between doctors and patients;
  • creating a support network for displaced doctors and nurses or people who simply need help to go shopping or to the pharmacy;
  • create a chatbot to clear doubts about state support for businesses and individuals;
  • accelerate the purchase of hospital supplies and launch crowdfunding for the purchase of hospital supplies;
  • disseminating information, recruiting and coordinating health professionals, or creating a system that allows the population to check symptoms without having to go to the doctor, are just some of the objectives of the projects.

Both the movement and the leaders of each tech4COVID19 project "are already in contact with health professionals and competent entities, such as the Directorate General of Health, the Shared Services of the Ministry of Health and the Regional Health Administrations, in order to validate their contribution, taking into account the current needs of the country, without running the risk of creating obstacles to the operations already underway," the movement points out in a statement.

On Facebook, Felipe Ávila da Costa, co-founder and CEO of Infraspeak, one of those involved in the project, told part of the experience this Sunday.

"After some talks with Portuguese startups founders about how technology can help fight covid-19, "tech4COVID19" was born. In less than 24 hours, 229 people among programmers, marketers, managers, designers and physiologists, among others, from many top Portuguese startups, got together in a Slack group and started discussing ideas and making them real. Now, we have seven solid projects going on, covering areas such as improving access to information, coordinating the spread of the disease and a crowdfunding campaign to buy hospital supplies", detailed the entrepreneur.

Read the original article here.

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