12:45PM, Thursday 12 November 2020
Households are being encouraged to volunteer for a study to monitor the spread and impact of COVID-19.
The Virus Watch study, supported by the NHS, will help researchers better understand how the virus is spreading in the community and how effective national and local restrictions are.
The University College London (UCL) led study will collect information from more than 40,000 people in England and Wales until March.
Participants will be asked to complete online questionnaires, download an app and share their medical records whether they have the virus or not.
They may also be sent COVID-19 swab tests and invited to receive blood tests.
Professor Andrew Hayward, the study’s lead investigator at UCL, said: “Attempts to control the spread of COVID-19 have led to severe disruption.
“We need people from all walks of life to join our study to help us understand how effective different COVID-19 restrictions are and to understand the impact on people’s lives.”