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Evidation Health and BARDA Partner on Early Warning System for COVID-19

June 10, 2020
3 minutes
Evidation Highlights

Here at Evidation, we’ve been identifying opportunities to contribute to COVID research. THe Evidation app is a product of Evidation Health, and has a community of over 3 million and members all around the United States. With an engaged research population representing a variety of zip codes and demographics, we’re uniquely positioned to help researchers and organizations conduct meaningful research about the pandemic.

On June 4th, Evidation Health announced a new effort to develop an early warning algorithm to detect symptoms of COVID-19 and to understand susceptibility to infection, funded by the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

“Many infected individuals are asymptomatic but still able to spread the virus, making efforts to prevent and slow transmission of COVID-19 difficult,” said Luca Foschini, Ph.D., Evidation’s co-founder and chief data scientist. “This initiative will use novel behavioral and physiological data to more effectively identify when and where people may contract COVID-19, and can potentially enable real-time interventions to limit spread and monitor outcomes.”

The analysis, performed in collaboration with non-profit 4YouandMe, will use de-identified data generated by self-reporting and wearable devices to track symptoms of COVID-19 in those at particularly high risk, including health care workers and other first responders, in order to better understand susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 infection. One potential outcome of this work is an early warning algorithm to help individuals better understand and monitor their respiratory disease symptoms and take precautions against their spread.

“The ability to self-monitor and be informed of health status will empower Americans in their decisions to help slow the spread of this pandemic and improve health outcomes for people with COVID-19,” said BARDA Acting Director, Gary Disbrow, Ph.D. “This pilot study is not only an early step in demonstrating the utility of models developed using person-generated health data but also may provide data to better understand the varied symptoms of COVID-19.”

This program follows Evidation’s work with BARDA to monitor individuals for respiratory infections, such as influenza. Evidation’s existing research on influenza utilizes person-generated health data and population-based models with the goal of improving real-time respiratory infection monitoring at the individual and population level. BARDA is contributing a $720,000 award as part of BARDA’s COVID-19 Rapidly Deployable Capabilities program to identify and pilot near-term innovative solutions for COVID-19. Support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is from the $250 million the foundation has committed to address the COVID-19 pandemic.

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