THIS new online tool could help to calculate your risk of dying from coronavirus, experts say.
The calculator uses information such as age, gender, sociodemographic factors and a variety of different health conditions to determine risk.
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It was developed by researchers at the Johns Hopkins and University Of Maryland and asks a serious of questions – including questions about your overall health as well as race and weight.
Using data from an NHS England study, the experts then based the results on US zipcodes, or postcodes as they're known in the UK.
The risk score was then tweaked to incorporate US settings by information on mortality rate by age and various race/ethnicity groups published by the Center for Disease Control (CDC).
People can put zipcodes in such as New York, 10002, Texas, Dallas – 75001 and 20001 for Washington DC.
The first section is "about you" and users will be asked their age, zipcode, race, sex, height and weight.
This will make a difference as studies have shown that obesity and those who are elderly are more at risk of death – or developing serious complications if they catch Covid-19.
People may understand broadly that with a preexisting condition such as obesity or diabetes, for example, they are at higher risk, but with our calculator they should be able to understand their risk in a way that takes multiple factors into account
The next section of the quiz is the "lifestyle" section, here you will be asked whether or not you have ever smoked.
Various studies have suggested that smoking heightens your risk of catching Covid-19.
Health bosses previously suggested that smokers were 14 times more likely to develop the coronavirus.
AT RISK GROUPS
The last section asks about your pre-existing health conditions.
Those taking the quiz will be asked whether they suffer from conditions such as asthma, diabetes, cancer or chronic respiratory conditions.
At the end of the quiz you are given a colour coded guide which shows you how at risk you are of dying from the virus.
A score of 1.2 or less means that you are close to or lower than average of dying from Covid-19 – this is colour coded in dark green.
A score of 1.2 – 2 means your risk is moderately elevated and a score of 2 – 5 means that the risk is substantially elevated.
A score of 5 – 10 is high risk, while anything over 10 is classed as very high risk.
One of the creators behind the calculator, Nilanjan Chatterjee, Ph.D., Bloomberg Distinguished Professor in the departments of Biostatistics and Epidemiology at the Bloomberg School said the tool will help people understand their broader risks.
Chatterjee said: "People may understand broadly that with a preexisting condition such as obesity or diabetes, for example, they are at higher risk, but with our calculator they should be able to understand their risk in a way that takes multiple factors into account."
The calculator is based on a paper published in Nature Medicine.
The experts said that the calculator could help health bodies allocate resources such as Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), to those who need it most.
The tool is updated on a weekly basis and uses state-based information to inform how high the risk is for individuals.
The researchers stated that population is also a factor when it comes to your risk of dying from Covid-19.
Chatterjee added: "For example, the percentage of the adult population exceeding the fivefold risk threshold varies from 0.4 percent in Layton, Utah, to 10.7 percent in Detroit, Michigan."
The experts added: "Our calculator represents a more quantitative approach and should complement other proposed qualitative guidelines, such as those by the National Academy of Sciences and Medicine, for determining individual and community risks and allocating vaccines."
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