About this research

Go to Frequently Asked Questions

The COVID symptom study was created by doctors and scientists at Massachusetts General Hospital, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, King's College London and Stanford University School of Medicine, working with ZOE – a health science company.

The app will be used to study the symptoms of COVID-19 and track the spread of this virus. This research is led by:

This app was built in the US to support the Nurses’ Health Study. This is one of the largest and longest-running scientific studies in the world with 280,000 participants stretching back to 1976. Many participants in the Nurses' Health Study are still active healthcare workers who are treating people with COVID across the country and risking their own health to help us. The app is now available to anyone in the US or UK who wants to help.

In response to recommendations by Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C), the app also includes questions for cancer patients and survivors, such as if they are living with cancer, what type of cancer and what treatment they are receiving. The medical community knows that individuals with cancer and those receiving anti-cancer therapy are at increased risk for getting COVID-19. “There is too much we don’t know about COVID-19 in the cancer community,” stated Stand Up To Cancer CEO Sung Poblete, PhD, RN. “This data will be invaluable to assess how best to support this high-risk community, and for cancer patients and survivors to contribute to combatting this pandemic.”

Prof. Spector created and runs TwinsUK, which is a scientific study of 15,000 identical and non-identical twins that has been running for nearly three decades. As well as using the app to study symptoms in the general population, TwinsUK is using it to understand how symptoms develop with participating twins. Their research is funded by the Wellcome Trust and the National Institute for Health Research.

Frequently asked questions

Who created the COVID Symptom Study?
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What is the aim of the research?
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Who will be using my data?
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How will my data be protected?
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Will someone make money off my data?
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How can I delete my data?
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There are other symptom studies - are you taking steps to standardise and share data?
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My symptom isn't listed - can I add it?
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Can I report symptoms on behalf of someone else, eg my family?
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I may have had COVID-19 already - can I report my history of symptoms?
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I would like to share my symptoms with relatives so they know if I get sick - can I do that?
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Can someone under 18 use the app?
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I've spotted a bug, or would like to suggest a feature - where should I send it?
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I'm unable to create an account
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I mistyped my email when registering for the app - what should I do?
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How can I set a daily reminder to log my symptoms?
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Will the app be available outside the UK and USA?
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Will you be launching a web-based version of the app for those without smartphones?
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Will you make this app available for those with limited sight?
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I'd like to see what symptoms are reported near me or across the country –how can I see what is going on?
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Why do I need to register with an email?
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How long will my data be used for?
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My password isn't working when I try to log in, what should I do?
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