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KT and Bill Gates Band Together for Research on ICT-based Response to Infectious Diseases
Funded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
KT and Bill Gates Band Together for Research on ICT-based Response to Infectious Diseases
  • By Choi Moon-hee
  • May 18, 2020, 11:34
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Byun Hyung-kyun (second from left), vice president of KT’s AI and Big Data Services, discusses research on ICT-based infectious disease prevention and containment with Dan Wattendorf, director of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, via a teleconferencing system.


KT will join Microsoft founder Bill Gates to develop an infectious disease response system to prevent a second COVID-19 crisis.

KT announced on May 17 that it will launch a research project on next-generation quarantine for infectious diseases. The three-year project, which will cost 12 billion won, will be 50 percent funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

With this study, KT will develop an AI-based algorithm for early diagnosis of infectious diseases and a communication data-based disease spread path prediction model.

The Gates Foundation began to develop a next-generation infectious disease response system with KT as Korea successfully implemented an effective COVID-19 quarantine and prevention system based on its excellent medical system and ICT-based technology.

As the first step, KT plans to develop an application that allows users to enter flu-like symptoms on their smartphones. This application stores users’ body temperatures and flu symptoms that are measured through an IoT sensor. Later, KT will complete an algorithm that determine the possibility of the users having been infected with flu by analyzing the data accumulated in the app with AI.

In addition, KT is also conducting research to analyze the history of flu spread by analyzing population migration histories, flu genomic test data, and influenza epidemics based on communication data. It will analyze influenza outbreaks by regions and develop a flu season forecast model by regions.