Aside from staying at home to improve social distancing, there’s another vital way we can help the NHS battle the Coronavirus – and it literally takes 60 seconds.
People across the UK can now self-report Coronavirus symptoms from the comfort of their sofas via a clever app which monitors whether they might have the virus, as well as contributes to research into how it’s spreading.
People are being urged to download the Covid Symptom Tracker app to self-report how they’re feeling – even if they are feeling well.
The app helps researchers determine the symptoms of the disease and track who may have it in which areas. The app asks users to fill in data including age, sex and postcode and information on their existing medical conditions, as well as current symptoms.
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The COVID Symptom Tracker was designed by doctors and scientists at King’s College London, Guys and St Thomas’ Hospitals working in partnership with ZOE Global Ltd – a health science company.
This research is led by Dr Tim Spector, professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London and director of TwinsUK a scientific study of 15,000 identical and non-identical twins, which has been running for nearly three decades.
“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,” he said.
“The concept is it is an early warning radar device because we are asking about non-classical symptoms as well, because many people are reporting non-persistent cough, or feeling unwell or a strange feeling of a lack of taste, or chest tightness that aren’t in the classical list but if we see it across the country in clusters we know they are probably real [symptoms of Covid-19].
“Speaking to clinicians in the hospital, especially in the elderly you get very different symptoms to the young so this idea there is only two types of symptoms – fever and long-term cough – is wrong. It can occur in many different ways.”
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The team are using the research to identify…
High-risk areas in the UK
Who is most at risk, by better understanding symptoms linked to underlying health conditions
How fast the virus is spreading in your area
In lieu of being able to join the NHS on the frontline, this is a super simple way you can do your part. Download the app here.