As of October 4, 2021 when we enter into Phase 5, contact tracing is no longer mandatory.
Contract Tracing App for Dine-in Restaurants & Licensed Establishments
The province of Nova Scotia has been working with the Restaurant Association of Nova Scotia (RANS) on
a pilot project for an app that dine-in restaurants and licensed establishments
can use to collect patrons’ contact information for contact tracing. This will
help standardize collection practices, ensure privacy of information, and
reduce the burden on businesses. It will also improve Public Health’s ability
to contact patrons as needed. The Department of Business (DOB) is supporting
RANS financially with the project.
companies were vetted and provided proposals. After careful deliberation, the
company SimplyCast was selected to offer their contract tracing platform as
part of this pilot project.
Little Bit About SimplyCast
SimplyCast is an
ISO 27001, 27017, and 27018-certified, leading provider of engagement software
for organizations worldwide, providing both emergency and non-emergency
communication technology. With customers in over 175 countries, including many
of the most recognized names in retail, non-profit and hospitality industries,
SimplyCast provides organizations the ability to effectively reach patrons on
their preferred mode of communication. SimplyCast is already deploying this
technology in Nova Scotia.
About the Project
RANS, in partnership (has contracted) with SimplyCast (a local technology company), is providing Nova Scotian restaurants and dine-in locations with an automated, SMS check-in system. This will provide dine-in restaurants with one year’s free service to the tracing app. Public Health will be able to access the system to track patrons to their location in order to meet restaurants’ mandatory requirement for COVID-19 contact tracing.
Order 11.1.1 indicates that restaurants must collect and maintain records for
How it Works
If a business has access to a it is able to register a
keyword such as GUEST and customers would be asked to use their
smartphones to text that designated word to the associated short code to
register their visit.
For example, let’s say Charlotte and her family
decide to go to a restaurant that has this digital check-in system implemented.
When they arrive at the restaurant signage posted at the front door asks
someone from the family to register their information for contact tracing
purposes by texting “GUEST” to 11111. All Charlotte has to do is send a text
message containing the word “GUEST” to the 11111 phone number and show the host
the confirmation reply before they would be seated and served.
Two weeks later, it turns out that someone who had
been to the restaurant around the same time as Charlotte and her family tested
positive for COVID-19. Public Health officials are then able to pull the
contact information from all the restaurant patrons who checked in with the
short code keyword within a specified time frame and a notification could be
sent out to Charlotte and family asking them to self-monitor for symptoms.
Restaurants will not be required to do anything, as the database is stored in a
secure location and managed off site.
For this particular project, Public Health will have
designated staff that have access to the database and they will be able to
access check-ins and track potential Covid exposure.
What if somebody comes into your establishment and
does not have a phone?
You have two options. (1) you may take down the
customers name and contact information and input it manually or (2) if you have
a tablet or device that is accessible, the customer can fill out a web form
that will be provided to you when you sign-up.
Sign-up Process for
With mandatory contract tracing
implemented across the province, SimplyCast has a quick and easy system to help
you out. No hidden fee, no
installation charge! You are getting a ready-made check-in solution for free without
taking any technical hassle.
Communicating to Your
You can download a poster to print and post at your establishment that shows guests coming in the steps to check-in (for contact tracing). Make sure to post it someplace visible and encourage everyone entering to text the appropriate keyword and number. There’s a space on the poster for you to write down your custom short code which is required when guests check-in.