A new online tool allows people to calculate their risk of contracting and spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.
The new tool has been developed by an international team of Behavioural Scientists, including academics from Trinity College Dublin, University of Limerick, Queen’s University Belfast, and NUI Galway.
Dr Chris Noone, a collaborating lecturer from NUI Galway, said:
“As we begin to loosen restrictions, our ability to maintain new habits like social distancing and effective hand washing is going to be crucial in ensuring that the transmission of COVID-19 does not spike again.
“This new tool provides a way of reflecting on how the things you do can help to reduce the impact of COVID-19 on our communities, and will also provide researchers with valuable information that can help, for example, to design ways of making it easier to practice social distancing.
“Existing initiatives have not provided fine-grained insight into why exactly people sometimes fail to adhere to the guidelines for preventive behaviours like social distancing and hand washing. However, to achieve behaviour change, it is necessary to understand the determinants of these behaviours,” Dr Noone said.
Insights from behavioural science were used in developing this tool.
First, users will obtain an estimate of their risk of contracting and spreading the virus. Three important risk behaviors are assessed:
hand hygiene, keeping sufficient distance in public places, avoiding going out. Based on their risk, users will receive a recommendation to support the behaviour change which would most minimise the risk to themselves and their loved ones.
The team managing the ‘Your COVID-19 Risk’ tool will compare the data internationally, providing advice to governments and health agencies on the best measures to take in their region.
The more people that use the tool, the better the advice. This will enable governments and health agencies to keep improving their messages to the general public.
The tool is available at https://your-covid-19-risk.com/.