Air Force asks for info on 10K COVID-19 ‘wearables'

Air Force image
Air Force image

The U.S. Air Force has posted a “request for information” for wearable devices that would help identify COVID-19 symptoms.

AFWERX, a subsidiary of the Air Force, with the Office of the Joint Surgeon General, is looking to procure an estimated 10,000 wearable devices in support of the service’s work dealing with COVID-19.

“The government is seeking commercially available wearable technologies that can provide insight into biometric data (ex: heart rate fluctuation, O2 levels, etc.) that can identify a potential COVID-19 infection early and alert the user through its user dashboard with warnings,” AFWERX said in recent request for information.

A request for information is not necessarily an announcement that the Air Force intends to buy or procure anything. It’s a way to gather information about technologies or products that may be available.

In this case, the Air Force announcement does say that AFWERX, a subsidiary focused on new technologies and innovation, is "looking to procure” the devices.

The Air Force is requiring that any such device not perform location tracking or collect or store personally identifiable information.

The government is asking several questions in the RFI, including: Is the device authorized to work within secure spaces, without Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, radio frequency, or GPS tracking? Is the device interoperable with other devices? And can a company deliver about 10,000 of the devices to select Air Force locations in two months or less?

The contracting office is Hanscom Air Force Base and the primary contact is Anthony David Suarez at anthony.suarez.1@us.af.mil.

Submissions are due Friday.

The Air Force has designated nine bases in the world as “red” installations due to the rise of COVID-19 cases in areas around the bases. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is not on the list, according to the Air Force Times.

Col. Patrick Miller, commander of the 88th Air Base Wing and installation commander at Wright-Patterson, is scheduled to give a COVID-19 update Monday afternoon on Facebook.

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