Find Out if People are Wearing Masks in Your Area
CMU updates COVIDcast website to include data on mask use and test results
You can now see how many people are wearing masks, statistics on the availability of COVID-19 testing and test results from just about anywhere in the U.S.
These categories have been added to the other data Carnegie Mellon University’s Delphi Research Group started collecting in April for the COVIDcast database. The other categories include symptoms, doctor visits, medical tests and browser searches related to COVID-19 in the United States.
“Some of these topics were partially addressed by the original survey, but we knew that as the pandemic changed and public health priorities adapted, our survey had to change, too,” says Alex Reinhart, assistant teaching professor in the Department of Statistics and Data Science and a member of the Delphi group.
The data on masks is collected from surveys on Facebook and the data on test results is from Quidel, a national health services system that provides rapid testing for COVID-19. The map “Positivity rate of COVID-19 antigen tests” only shows data from Quidel tests.
The website is updated daily to factor in new surveys and tests. More than 1 million U.S. residents have responded since the expanded survey was released last month. Reignhart explains that it can help public officials and researchers better understand where the virus is most likely to spread and what preventative measures prove most effective.
“Our survey doesn’t replace official public health reporting on COVID testing and case counts, but it can provide insights not available any other way,” Reinhart says. “By providing these signals to the public, we hope to give researchers, public health officials and journalists the information they need to form a more complete picture of the pandemic.”