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How Are You Feeling? Surveys Aim to Detect COVID-19 Hot Spots Early


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Social distancing markers on the ground in a London park.

Researchers are fielding mass population surveys to try to get ahead of the coronavirus and ensure that scarce diagnostic tests, and even scarcer ventilators, are sent where they can do the most good.

Credit: Andrew Testa/The New York Times

Epidemiologists and computer scientists have persuaded more than 2 million Britons and 150,000 Israelis to fill out Web- or app-based health surveys to detect incipient COVID-19 outbreaks and send resources to where they can do the most good.

Artificial intelligence experts at Israel's Weizmann Institute of Science led the Israeli initiative, feeding computer models survey results; the models accurately forecast surges in COVID-19 cases in cities like Bnei Brak, Jerusalem, and Beersheva five days in advance.

The U.K. initiative uses survey results to help pinpoint where ventilators and mobile intensive-care units should be dispatched.

Massachusetts General Hospital, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City are leading a U.S. effort.

Massachusetts General's Andrew Chan and colleagues are adapting the U.K. app, while MIT will promote a survey app co-developed with engineers at image-sharing website Pinterest.

From The New York Times
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p>Abstracts Copyright © 2020 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA

 


 

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