Coronavirus COVID-19

Government sets up Hispabot-Covid19, a channel for enquiries about COVID-19 through WhatsApp

News - 2020.4.8

The government has set up the conversational assistant Hispabot-Covid19, which function through WhatsApp. This is an automatic channel for enquiries that uses artificial intelligence and natural language to respond to concerns from the public about COVID-19 with official, precise and updated information.

Hispabot-Covid19 is a "chatbot" service that allows citizens to obtain immediate responses to frequently asked question about the coronavirus 24 hours a day.

Following a mandate from the Ministry of Health, this tool was pushed through by the State Secretariat for Digitalisation and Artificial Intelligence, attached to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation.

The system, tested with more than 200 questions that can be asked in 1,000 different ways, uses information from Ministry of Health sources and other official bodies relating to symptoms of the disease, preventive measures, information on protection, current figures, contact numbers, etc.

To use Hispabot-Covid19 through WhatsApp, you simply need to save the number +34 600 802 802 in contacts and write the word "hola" in a message to start a conversation. You will then be welcomed to the service and informed of the issues on which information can be provided.

Hispabot-Covid19 contributes to reducing the pressure on health hotlines, offering an alternative with simple information available at any time.

"At times like the present, it is necessary to have technological tools that offer official and reliable information to people at all times", said Carme Artigas, State Secretary for Digitalisation and Artificial Intelligence. Hispabot-Covid19 was created on WhatsApp Business API, using the global communications platform Vonage API and with as the contact point.

The ONCE Foundation also collaborated on the project, evaluating the tool and offering recommendations that were included in Hispabot-Covid19 to guarantee its accessibility.

This tool to resolve doubts through WhatsApp is in addition to the Asistencia COVID-19 app, the web page and the official self-diagnosis app and information about the disease, which is now available in six regions.

Non official translation