- Pinterest's CEO has partnered with Feeding America and experts from Harvard University, Stanford University, and more to launch How We Feel, an app that lets you self-report your symptoms.
- The goal of the app is to collect real-time data to help researchers detect regions on the brink of a coronavirus outbreak, and track how the virus spreads in communities.
- How We Feel doesn't ask for any personal identifying information like your name, phone number, or email address, but it does ask for your age, gender, location, and health history.
- The survey takes 30 seconds, and you're supposed to take it every day.
- For each download, Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann and his wife Divya will donate to Feeding America, up to 10 million meals.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Pinterest's CEO has launched a new app to help gather data about the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Called "How We Feel," the app asks users to report information like age, gender, location, and how they're feeling so experts can track real-time data about the virus.
The app, which is available for free on iOS and Android, asks users to donate their data, which Pinterest says is only used in the service of public health. Users aren't asked for identifying personal information like their name, email address, or phone number, and the app says upon opening it that you can stop donating your data anytime you want.
How We Feel asks users to complete daily health check-ins, which take about 30 seconds, so researchers can track the spread of the coronavirus. You'll be asked where you're located, your health history, and how you're feeling, with the option to share your symptoms if you're not feeling well. You can also share information about how you're preventing the spread of the virus - like social distancing or self-isolating - and whether anyone in your household is showing symptoms.
The key is to complete the survey every day, because it can help experts predict areas that may be on the brink of an outbreak of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. According to a statement from Xihong Lin, a professor of biostatistics at Harvard University, analyzing the data provided by the app could help scientists discover common characteristics of the outbreak, study how the disease is spread in communities, learn the timeline of COVID-19 symptoms, and set up strategies for testing in specific regions and creating new testing sites.
The data will also help researchers learn what kind of effect strategies like social distancing and self-isolation have had on reducing the spread of the disease. Overall, Lin said, the goal is to give policymakers more information to help them adjust their response to the virus as needed.
The app is the first project from The How We Feel Project, a nonprofit aimed at connecting the worldwide health community. Pinterest's CEO partnered doctors and researchers - including scientists from Harvard, Cornell, Stanford, and University of Pennsylvania - to launch the project. Every time the app is downloaded, Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann and his wife Divya will donate to Feeding America, a nonprofit that works with food banks, up to 10 million meals.
As of Friday morning, How We Feel had donated 4,909 meals through Feeding America.