GPS dashboards boost efficiency of Georgia’s COVID-19 helpline

New technology provided by UNDP improves response time of emergency services

June 26, 2020

Photo: Nino Zedginidze/UNDP

Twelve GPS dashboards were installed today at the premises of Georgia’s COVID-19 helpline service to assist its operators in responding to emergency calls and questions from the public. The 144 service operates 330 ambulance crews and manages up to 4,500 calls for help every day. The new dashboards were provided by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with USD 30,000 from the UN COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund as part of a USD 1 million allocation to the UN agencies in Georgia.

“Fighting the pandemic requires accurate information and quick responses,” said UNDP Head Louisa Vinton. “Installing the new technology will enable the 144 helpline to run more efficiently and reduce response times, with the benefits to Georgia extending far beyond the current crisis.”

The 144  helpline of the LEPL Emergency Situations Coordination and Urgent Assistance Center was launched by the Georgian Government in the first weeks of the pandemic, soon after the country declared a state of emergency. The service consolidates information from different agencies involved in crisis management and coordinates their work, ensuring that every call for help triggers a prompt and effective response. Helpline staff also provide people with up-to-date information about the rules and regulations introduced to counter the pandemic.

The new GPS dashboards will allow the 144 operators to pinpoint the locations of callers and emergency crews, ensuring that assistance reaches those who need it as fast as possible. The dashboards can also determine which medical facility is closest and offers the appropriate care.

New tools for the COVID-19 helpline are just one component of the assistance the UN agencies are providing to help the Government and local communities manage the emergency. It is provided through the UN COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, an inter-agency mechanism established by the UN Secretary-General to support countries in weathering the COVID crisis. Georgia was one of the first 46 countries named eligible for this funding, and the UN team in Georgia has received USD 1 million to protect vulnerable groups from the COVID-19 impact.

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