COVID-19 symptom tracker helps identify UK hotspots

There are well-known ways to track the number of coronavirus cases around the globe using real-time dashboards on the web, but now there’s an app that will let you not only track the spread of COVID-19 but also learn where the most-high risk areas in the UK and who is most at risk.

UK researchers who part of. a collaboration between researchers at King’s College London and Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospitals have launched the app. It’s called COVID Symptom Tracker and is in an attempt to better understand the pandemic. The hope is to collect and serve up real-time information about whether people in the UK are feeling sick, and it’ll even show you hotspots indicating where the virus could be rapidly spreading.

If you use the app, you’ll be asked to submit data about yourself, including your age, sex, and postcode. There are also questions about your medical conditions, like heart disease or asthma and diabetes, and it’ll even ask if you take immunosuppressants. As a participant, you’ll also need to spend a minute daily reporting if you’re healthy or feeling symptoms such as coughs and fatigue.

“By using this app you’re contributing to advance vital research on COVID-19. The app will be used to study the symptoms of the virus and track how it spreads,” the app’s website reads. “We take data security very seriously and will handle your data with huge respect. Your data is protected by [GDPR]. It will only be used for health research and will not be used for commercial purposes.”

In a statement, the researchers described their app as an “early warning radar”. The app is available now on iOS and Android.

Researchers have also specifically asked 5,000 twins and their families across the UK to use the app as part of a wider project. To learn more about the app, including how your data will be used and your rights, go here.

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