Covid Act Now
The Challenge: Covid-19 is a global pandemic unlike any other experienced in our lifetimes. The coronavirus outbreak is, first and foremost, a human tragedy, affecting the health of hundreds of thousands of people. The virus is putting a severe strain on our healthcare system and economy as our local, state and national policy makers put measures in place to try to keep citizens safe and healthy. Making decisions about when to shelter in place and when to reopen our communities will be key to ensuring we manage the spread of the virus and save lives. Without good data policy makers will be forced to make critical decisions in the dark, essentially guessing about how to best contain the virus, manage the strain on our healthcare system and safely re-open our cities and towns.
What Can Be Done? Getting good, real-time data into the hands of policy makers and decision makers will help save lives and get our country reopened safely. A smart restart is going to require a range of policy decisions (e.g. when to reopen schools) and policy makers need to be able to effectively model the potential impacts of decisions. There are vast amounts of information available in different communities, but making sense of this data requires significant data analysis expertise and the ability to effectively integrate that data into easy to use dashboards for decision makers.
How Act Now Coalition is meeting the challenge: The Act Now Coalition is team of former Silicon Valley veterans who launched a volunteer project, Covid Act Now, to build data dashboards that combine local hospital utilization data, epidemiological projections and local policy actions of over 2000 counties into a ready-to-use dashboard for policymakers on how new policy actions could impact further spread of Covid-19. Their “U.S COVID Intervention Model” has exploded in use and state officials in multiple states have used it to make decisions to issue shelter-in-place orders. Now, the Covid Act Now project will move into a new phase that will help policy makers make decisions about how restart their communities. In this new phase, Covid Act Now will:
- Pull in additional data sources and partner with academic researchers to improve their “smart restart” models
- Meet the surging demand for a live dashboard that provides real-time data on caseload, hospital/ICU/ventilator utilization, movement data and projections around when critical resources will run out.
- Build additional dashboards modeling the potential impacts of policy makers decisions