Call for volunteers to 'speak up' and help Covid research

Volunteers are wanted to take part in a study to help contribute to Covid-19 research.

Wednesday, 10th March 2021, 10:09 am
Updated Wednesday, 10th March 2021, 10:28 am

The Government's Department of Health and Social Care is asking for people willing to take five minutes of their time to submit voice sounds, which will then be used to see how algorithms can use voice data, including cough recordings, to detect Covid-19.

They said: "Identifying if someone is more likely to need a test by using voice sounds, we can find more cases, help slow the spread of Covid-19 and protect our health service."

Taking part

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Volunteers are wanted to take part in a study to help contribute to Covid-19 research.

Everyone over the age of 18 who has arranged to get a Covid test at selected sites or has agreed to take part in follow up research is invited to volunteer.

If you’d like to take part in this study, you should use your own smartphone or tablet to visit www.ciab2021.uk. You cannot take part using a laptop or computer.

You will then be asked to read and accept a privacy notice that explains how your information will be used. You will then be asked for your consent to take part in the study.

The form will ask a few basic questions about you, and your health. These questions, such as your height or first language, are all things that can affect how your voice sounds.

You will need to record a short series of sounds using the built-in microphone on your phone or tablet. These sounds will include a forced cough, breathing sounds and a defined sentence. Guidance on screen will help you through these steps. It should take you 5 to 10 minutes to complete.

This study will not offer any medical advice. The sole purpose of this study is to collect data for research.

To take part, you need:

A smartphone or tablet

To be connected to the internet

Your Covid-19 test kit barcode number (this should be an 11-character code in the format ABC12345678)

It is important that you submit your information no later than 48 hours after your Covid swab.

You should only submit your voice sounds while you are alone. Do not submit your voice sounds if you are in a vehicle or room with any other people.

The Department for Health and Social Care said the information submitted will be used for research purposes only.

Researchers will process audio files from your recordings and the information that you provide. You can learn more about the use of information collected as part of this study by reading the privacy notice on the study website.