As of Thursday, March 5, the World Health Organization has confirmed more than 90,000 cases of coronavirus worldwide. Originating in China, the disease has spread worldwide and resulted in over 3,000 deaths. Both public and private organizations have already revised travel guidelines and canceled large meetings and events. As these organizations continue to prepare for COVID-19’s impact, they need tools to share information to individuals about policy updates and contingency plans in the event of infection.
One of the tools that can help organizations to quickly share information to a large group of people is a mass notification system (MNS). Generally defined, a MNS is a platform that sends a one-way message to inform individuals of emergencies. The latest mass notification solutions, such as Mitel Revolution, are designed to protect, alert, and inform people by providing the right message, to the right people, at the right time.
Whether it’s to share guidelines for avoiding exposure or notifications about new confirmed case rates, mass notifications that reach premise-based and mobile devices can keep everyone informed about the current virus situation. Below are several delivery methods organizations can use to keep people informed about COVID-19 developments.
For organizations with large populations, such as K-12 schools or college campuses, sending health information to prevent an outbreak can help minimize the impact a major illness like the coronavirus can have on operations. Information about health resources, tips to reduce infection, or even notifications about confirmed infections can be sent via mass notification. Both audio and text messages can be delivered to IP phones, mobile devices, email and more to make sure alerts are not missed. A mass notification system can also provide updates on developing situations or once “business as usual” resumes.
With COVID-19 spreading worldwide, global organizations with people who frequently travel internationally can leverage the use of mobile devices for important communications. Organizations can help keep those abroad up to date on potential risks by leveraging mass notifications that reach them via SMS text message, push notification or email. Mass notification systems can also incorporate confirmation response to ensure that recipients have not only received the message, but that they have read and understood the information.
Coordination of Efforts
COVID-19’s impact is complex and continues to evolve, requiring careful coordination and dissemination of information. Along with mass notification, utilizing collaboration tools can also be of benefit. Many individuals use collaboration tools daily, allowing them to act as endpoints to alerts triggered by mass notification. Collaboration tools can also be used to connect groups of people to plan for next steps or even replace in-person meetings and conferences during this time of travel bans and quarantine.
The above is general information on how organizations can leverage mass notification to manage a crisis such as the current coronavirus outbreak. Parallel partner Mitel offers mass notification solution Mitel Revolution as part of its suite of collaboration applications.
The CDC website is a reliable resource for the most up to date information about current COVID-19 situation.