Google, Researchers Launch Data Platform To Tackle COVID-19

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Google.org has joined hands with a consortium of COVID-19 researchers to launch Global.health, an open-access epidemiological data platform that enables experts to track disease spread in real-time and to forecast future outbreaks, informing effective government and public response.

The company said in a statement issued on Monday that the data platform was created to leverage anonymised data from open access authoritative public health sources to track disease progression.

Google.org Research Fellow, Kernie Obimakinde, noted that though data were a vital tool in understanding and fighting disease, upholding data privacy was also a critical aspect in the design of Global.health.

“When an outbreak occurs, timely access to organised, trustworthy and anonymised data is critical as it can help public health leaders formulate early policy, medical interventions, and resource allocation – all of which can slow the spread of disease and save lives,” he explained.

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The Global.health team expressed confidence that the platform would become a key addition to the world’s early warning systems toolbox, helping identify and respond to future epidemics and pandemics that may occur globally, regionally and nationally.

– Punch

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