CoEpi is building a privacy-first system for anonymous Bluetooth proximity-based exposure alerting based on voluntary symptom sharing.
Dealing with a COVID-19 pandemic
As individual COVID-19 outbreaks grow and merge into a global pandemic, and responses transition from containment to mitigation, the question arises: “What can we do?” As public health authorities scramble to trace contacts, ensure health systems are prepared, and even begin to implement wider social distancing measures as outbreaks spread, the advice to individuals remains simple: scrub down your hands with soap after touching surfaces, stay home from work or school if sick, etc. This is good advice, but leaves open the question of when it’s appropriate to take more disruptive action to reduce transmission risk.
What we can do together
The CoEpi project attempts to bridge the gap between governmental public health actions and individual attention to hygiene. We believe it is possible to combine modern smartphone technology and cloud computing to empower individuals and their personal networks to automatically and anonymously track their own contacts, and inform themselves and their friends and family about increased infection risks. This will allow individuals to make informed risk-based decisions about when it’s most important to implement additional social distancing measures above and beyond the measures being recommended community-wide. Because the virus that causes COVID-19 can be transmitted while people do not have symptoms, early notification of exposure can encourage people to self-quarantine when they may be contagious but before they are sick. This is critical for stopping wide-spread transmission. It will also enable communities with active community transmission to track and quarantine chains of infection remotely and at scale. Other communities will achieve earlier, and more complete detection when COVID arrives. Through digital interaction, personal contact and risks are decreased, and frontline medical resources are reserved for individuals that truly require emergency medical care.
The CoEpi team
The CoEpi team currently consists of a small group of individuals with diverse and relevant skills who feel the need to put those skills to use in service of our own loved ones, our broader social networks, our communities, and humanity. We are committed to working openly and transparently, publishing all of our work completely open-source for anyone to use in any way they can, to make sure we are all doing everything we can to minimize the death and disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. CoEpi was founded by and is led by Dana Lewis and Scott Leibrand.
How you can help
We need lots of help to get this project going quickly. We need people with native mobile app development experience (either iOS or Android), UX designers, and also folks experienced with building scalable cloud applications with backend data stores and flexible container-based front ends, to help get #CoEpi off the ground as fast as possible. You can see our active repositories here.
If you're someone who would like to test the early version of the #CoEpi app (or if you have other skills to volunteer), fill out this form.
If you don’t have the ability to help out directly, please share this with anyone you know who might be able to, or who might know others who could help. If you have connections at an organization who might be able to commit people to helping on this, either by working with us or doing something similar internally, please reach out to them and let them know how urgent it is and how much of a difference they could make.
Find us on Github - everything is open source
You can find all of our work open source on Github. Our CoEpi organization holds multiple repositories, including the content of this website. PRs are welcome!
Our Contributing guide applies to all of these repositories, and also has information with how you can get added to the CoEpi slack channel if you are interested in being an active contributor.