Grady Advanced EMT, Emma Hovis prepares for another patient call. First responders at Grady Hospital are on the frontline of the COVID-19 epidemic and are taking precautions on each call. JOHN SPINK/JSPINK@AJC.COM
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Emory launches a new online tool for COVID-19 screening

Is it COVID-19, a common cold or seasonal allergies?

And, if it is likely COVID-19, do you need to go to the ER?

Emory doctors have helped to create a new online tool — C19check.com — that allows people to screen themselves for symptoms of the coronavirus and to receive recommendations on what to do next.

The website is a way to self-triage and is designed to help prevent a surge of patients at hospitals and health-care facilities, according to Emory infectious disease expert Dr. Carlos del Rio. He also said this can help people get answers quickly rather than waiting on hold for hours on a helpline.

Based on the answers to questions about symptoms, age and other medical problems, people are placed into one of three categories: high risk (needs immediate medical attention); intermediate risk (can contact their doctors for guidance about how to best manage their illness); and low risk (can most likely administer self-care or recover at home).

The free tool was designed by Vital software with guidance from Emory.

The site is not a replacement for a health-care provider evaluation, according to Emory doctors.

Meanwhile, Apple also has developed a new website (apple.com/covid19) and app that provides screening for COVID-19 symptoms.

MORE: COMPLETE COVERAGE: Everything you need to know about the coronavirus in Georgia 

A medical worker in protective gear helps a potential COVID-19 patient with paperwork at a Phoebe Putney Health System drive-through testing site in Albany on Tuesday, March 24, 2020. HYOSUB SHIN / HYOSUB.SHIN@AJC.COM
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

In a conference call with reporters Monday, del Rio said many people who are suffering from seasonal allergies are concerned they might have COVID-19. He said itchy eyes, scratchy throats and occasional coughs are typical symptoms of seasonal allergies. One distinction between allergies and COVID-19 is you don’t get a fever with allergies. But fever is a telling sign of COVID-19.

Doctors think loss of smell and taste could be an early symptom of the coronavirus, before a person develops a cough, according to information posted on the American Academy of Otolaryngology website.

Every morning, del Rio performs a check on himself. If he doesn’t have an elevated temperature and he can smell his coffee, he said, he considers himself “good to go.”

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.

Download the new AJC app. More local news, more breaking news and in-depth journalism.
AJC.com. Atlanta. News. Now.

Download the new AJC app. More local news, more breaking news and in-depth journalism.
AJC.com. Atlanta. News. Now.

With the largest team in the state, the AJC reports what’s really going on with your tax dollars and your elected officials. Subscribe today. Visit the AJC's Georgia Navigator for the latest in Georgia politics.

Your subscription to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism. Visit the AJC's Georgia Navigator for the latest in Georgia politics.

X