A wireless magnetic door mechanism is being used at local communities to help manage households under quarantine during the coronavirus epidemic.
The Shanghai government has ordered mandatory 14-day home quarantine for those who return to the city from "key affected areas" of novel coronavirus pneumonia, such as central China's Hubei Province, but show no symptoms.
Local community workers are under great pressure to prevent those being quarantined from leaving their homes. They also need to check their temperatures daily and keep them supplied with necessities.
Those found with high temperature or other infection symptoms will be reported and sent for a required medical check or treatment, according to rules from the government.
The wireless door magnet mechanism, which can be easily installed onto any door frame, will send an alarm to neighborhood committee and subdistrict officials automatically once the door of a quarantined household is opened.
The high-tech gadget, initiated in Putuo District, is being promoted across the city to help local neighborhood committees amid the outbreak.
The Guiyangyuan Neighborhood in Caoyang Community, China's first community built for model workers in the 1950s, was among the first to install such door catches for quarantined households.
The old neighborhood has over 400 households coming from main coronavirus-hit regions.
Previously, each of eight neighborhood committee staff had to work over 12 hours every day to visit and take care of 50 quarantined households.
Thanks to the Internet of Things device, they can now work more efficiently. Once a quarantined resident opens their door, the catch will send a message to their phones while also generating an alert for the subdistrict's urban management system.
The new device is far more efficient than traditional management methods, such as paying visits frequently, said Chen Jian, Party secretary of the Guiyangyuan neighborhood committee.
After the epidemic is over, the community plans to install some of the devices onto the doors of elderly residents living alone to ensure their safety. Community workers will call or visit if any senior keeps their door closed for an extended period of time.
The wireless door catch has also been used in Jiading District.
Fifteen such devices have been installed on the door frames of quarantined out-of-towners in Anting Town, where an increasing number of people are returning to work as local companies resume operations.
The system can monitor quarantined households around the clock and prevent infection risks, according to the town.
An alert will also be triggered if the magnet is removed or runs out of battery.