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Interactive COVID-19 tool helps you understand risk factor of a gathering

The COVID-19 Event Risk Assessment Planning Tool is simply a way to look at the risk you’re taking in any sized gathering, in any county, and the risk big or small is high across Wisconsin.
Published: Nov. 16, 2020 at 3:03 PM CST
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - With Thanksgiving arriving next week and Christmas coming next month, we’re learning more about a COVID-19 interactive tool you can use. It shows you the coronavirus risk level in a gathering of any size, big or small, in every county in the U.S.

The COVID-19 Event Risk Assessment Planning Tool is simply a way to look at the risk you’re taking in any sized gathering, in any county, and the risk big or small is high across Wisconsin.

“You can look at Brown County, and if you are thinking about attending a group of 15 people, the current risk is about 54%, but the group with actually 50 people, then the risk goes up to 92%,” said Dr. Stephen Beckett, a Research Scientist at Georgia Institute of Technology.

Dr. Beckett and a number of other data scientists from Georgia Tech and Stanford University put the tool together, which uses numbers collected by the CDC, and it updates daily with new coronavirus infection numbers. It’s a way to make informed choices.

“We think about this like a weather map, and so if there’s a high chance of rain, you’d bring an umbrella, and so here, if there’s a high chance of COVID, maybe people might reconsider going to a high risk event something that’s inside or a large number of people,” said Dr. Beckett.

The map is very user friendly and you can see the estimated risk for COVID-19 in a gathering as low as 10 people and as high as 5,000.

“We’ve had a huge amount of interest. I think around 2 million people visited the site last week. We also have a Twitter feed that posts these map images daily,” said Dr. Beckett.

Researchers on the project hope this outreach will help make an impact in how people make their decisions this holiday season.

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