In what is likely to be a major scientific breakthrough once formally certified, a former Great Zimbabwe University (GZU) student and a third-year student at the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) have designed computer software they say can distinguish ordinary pneumonia from the one caused by Covid-19.

The two pioneers of the system say the software will give impetus to the fight against Covid-19 as it will help in diagnosis and management of people affected by the virus, which has infected over 92 million people across the world in the past year.

Pardon Mukoyi (22), an ex-Computer Science student at GZU and Wisdom Murombo (23), a third-year student in Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering at NUST, have developed a system known as Covid-19 Pneumonia Diagnostic System which also helps monitor pneumonia progression in those infected with coronavirus.

According to them, the system is able to interpret chest X-rays to diagnose Covid-19-induced pneumonia which they say is key in the early assessment stages.

The pair recently hogged the international limelight after coming second out of more than eight countries that participated in the 9th International Competition of Appropriate Technology (ICAT) that was held virtually last week because of Covid-19.

The system, also known as Covid-19 C-Ray Diagnostic System, is based on artificial intelligence and they successfully showcased it at ICAT.

They walked away with a second price of US$900 after beating other budding computer scientists from countries such as Russia.

Murombo yesterday appealed for assistance from Government to regularise their Covid-19 Induced Diagnostic System so that it can be used by local health institutions.

“We need Government support so that our system is accepted as a duly registered software that can be used in local health institutions,” said Murombo.

He has deep passion in design and coming up with practical industrial solutions to help his community.

Mukoyi is a self-declared cyber-security and Artificial Intelligence expert.