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Standard Operating Procedures and COVID-19

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In 2020, we have all been witness to the tremendous effect that the COVID-19 pandemic has had, from a Global perspective, on a national level, and of course the ramifications to us – as citizens.

We have all learnt to live with new phrases like “flattening the curve”, the “R”, social distancing, daily infectious rate, forecasting models, and a lot more. Via social media we are continuously tracking the latest updates, we are inundated with infection heat maps and charts depicting transmission patterns data. We are now, more than ever, expecting transparency, as united we battle the worst pandemic of the last 100 years.

Yet, another revolution has been taking place. Local municipalities are now taking a more central role in the well-being and health of their citizens. A function that is traditionally filled by central government, today is managed on a local level. Vast amounts of data need to be processed, fast decision making is paramount, and real time actions are a necessity. In short, the Cities of 2020 really need to be Smart.

A Smart City, is one that operates an Integrated Operating Center. This IOC is the “War Room” at the heart of the City. Operated 24/7, the IOC gathers, analyzes, and acts on data coming from many sources. The source of information spans hospitals, testing sites, schools, CCTV cameras, IoT devices, emergency services, citizens APPs and more…

The Smart City is a digital landscape of connected sensors and devices, creating millions of control endpoints while generating real-time data during day-to-day operations and at the same time facilitating automated actions. However, as the city scales exponentially, management of smart city assets and orchestrating actions across them presents a key challenge.

This IOC is an integral part of the Advanced Command and Control Center for Public Safety, enabling the convergence of health, public safety, and Smart City domains. Aiding public safety agencies take advantage of smart city infrastructure for improved decision making in emergency situations.

In the design of a Smart City, an Intelligent Operations Center (IOC) is crucial. As the smart brain of a city, the IOC needs to fulfill the responsibilities of the four centers of the city: the day-to-day operations, event and warning, decision making and Emergency Command and Control center

Operational center: Collects, processes, and monitors city operations in a unified manner to improve collaboration efficiency, implement quick response, optimize city management resources, and improve city governance.

Decision-making center: The mass of data flowing in from all of the city sensors forms “City Big Data” This is now used for data analytics and data mining, in order to present the key points and difficulties in city management, supporting city decision-making on all levels

Command and Control center: When a major event or emergency occurs in the city, the command center coordinates multiple departments to implement unified command, action, and resource allocation, achieving cross-level, cross-region, and cross-department command and dispatch. The command center must support video dispatching, multi-party multi technology communication, video consultation, and mobile office operations, to ensure that the command center is available wherever the city officials are.

Event and Warning center: Predicts potential risks and provides warnings in advance to prevent major emergencies.

MER’s Integrated Operations Center (IOC) Smart-M lies at the heart of the Smart City operations, offering a true unified real-time view into all Smart city assets and services, bringing efficiency and revenue opportunities with analytics integration, while facilitating rapid response based on automated workflows across multiple applications.

The IOC is highly customizable, and MER’s technical Smart City experts accommodate each Cities requirements and needs tailoring infrastructure, implementing Standard Operating Procedures, designing City Dashboards.

With over 2 decades of experience in HLS and Smart Cities, MER is your ideal partner for IOCs and Smart Cities in 2021 and beyond.

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