Bristol team launches coronavirus support app

A coronavirus support app has been launched to help people navigate through the pandemic and the many issues that can arise.

The app has been developed by Expert Self Care, a team of volunteer health professionals, the Self Care Forum, the National Institute for Health Research Applied Research Collaboration West and Imperial College London.

The company Expert Self Care is a Bristol based health information app provider, and has developed the app to help people navigate the pandemic by providing reliable information and to help with the practical, social and financial consequences of the pandemic.

It is aimed at people in the UK aged 16 and over who would like to learn more about coronavirus. It aims to help by giving users easy and quick access to evidence-informed information about COVID-19 in one place, even when offline. It also signposts to reliable, trusted sources of information and offers advice for a range of situations, including for anyone feeling anxious, at risk of domestic violence and abuse, or in need of medical treatment.

Project Lead Dr Knut Schroeder, a practising GP and Founder of Expert Self Care, said “In the current coronavirus crisis, reliable information is more important than ever. We designed this app to bring together all the best sources of information to support people during the pandemic and beyond. False information leads to rumours and myths that can hamper public health efforts, which may result in preventable disease and deaths.”

“We haven’t received any external funding for this app and it’s available to download for free, so we are grateful to the team of volunteers who have made this app possible. They have been amazing during a very difficult time for everyone.”

Zoe Trinder-Widdess, Communications Manager at NIHR ARC West, who was part of the editorial team behind the app, said “With lockdown easing, many people may feel less worried about the coronavirus pandemic. But as we go back to work, school and socialising – all at a safe distance – up to date information about what’s allowed or what to do if you become unwell is as vital as ever.”

“Trying to get this app published has been an interesting process. Both Apple and Google are rightly being very cautious about the quality of the coronavirus-related apps they allow on their platforms. I am pleased that our app has met their stringent guidelines and can be used as a trusted source of reliable information by the public.”