Our Contribution towards Pandemic : COVID-19 Call Center Application

During COVID-19 pandemic I was tasked with developing an application which is to track down patient details who contacted with National Hospital Kandy due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Sri Lanka. This came as an urgent requirement during the 1st wave. The problem was it was difficult to track down false calls as well as genuine calls given by the patient to National Hospital Kandy’s COVID-19 Call Center. Since we were working from home the initial Requirements for the application came to me via an email to me by a panel of experts who discuss and finalized the demographic data to be captured by the proposed application to be developed.


Gathering of Requirements

Gathering of requirements was a tedious task because of Lockdown laws were placed during that time because of COVID-19 pandemic. I had to rely on emails which were forwarded to me by the expert panel of NHK, since the gathering of required information provided by emails, there was a possibility that clients requirement was not covered by the provided emails. Even though I carried out with minimum idea regarding requirements, I started working the project as soon as possible afterwards because of time limitation for development.


Problems faced during Development

Since this was an urgent requirement to be fulfilled before it overwhelms the personals in the assigned call center, I started development with having a limited time.

  • The first hurdle was to identify the development technology, access as I had the freedom of planning the design.
  • I choose to develop as an online solution since it can be accessed via the internet as well as via local area network to suit to different working conditions.
  • Time Limitation was critical since I had a limited number of days to come up with a design and develop the application.
  • And final hurdle was developing a scoring mechanism in the application with providing guideline via requirement document provided by the email.


Design and development

I started developing interfaces with minimalistic self-explanatory design in mind because the end-users required minimum time to spent on a learning curve before fully adopting the application which will be using for an extended period.

Several functionalities I would like a highlight in this project.

  • Search Function was developed to search using final digits of the application which saved time for the end-user when used that function to search for a patient to update information.
  • Registering process was self-explanatory and the new user could register without any hassle.


Problems and difficulties faced after Implementation

After Implementing the Application, I faced several problems during the initial implementation process. They were mainly

  • the scoring mechanism implemented initially was unchangeable by default for end-user.
  • users did not receive the ability to change score, symptoms, and conditions during the initial implementation of the application.

I was able to update the application so that the admin role had the ability to change symptoms, conditions and scores assignment can be updated per their requirements in the future.


Impact of the Final Application to Users

The impact of the end application was significant to the end-users such as Call Operators and doctors who used the COVID-19 patient tracker. Mainly I can focus on several key advantages of this application. They were

  • This application was Simplistic, and the learning curve is simple so Any user with minimum IT knowledgeable to use it.
  • Time-saving – The users were able to check information via the internet with easy and can manage reports and Follow up lists with easy.
  • Simultaneous usage ability.
  • Distinguish between necessary calls and unnecessary calls.


Final Thoughts about the Project

As in for final Thoughts regarding the project, it had ups and downs, but I had managed them with the help from several Key Individuals from the expert panel who lend the requirements for the project. I was managed to capture every requirement which provided to the initial Application and added several after Implementation of the project.