New York City launches portal for self-reporting coronavirus spread in real time

New York City has deployed a COVID-19 portal designed to track the spread of the virus across the city, according to City & State New York.

The NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal is a self-reporting portal for people who are having COVID-19 symptoms, have tested positive for COVID-19 or have otherwise been exposed to the virus.

Portal users enter a limited amount of personal information, which will only be shared with city officials who "have a need to access [the] information," a spokesperson for the city said. 

After personal information is entered, portal users are given a case reference number that can be used to report changes in their symptoms or whether someone in their household has tested positive for COVID-19.

"Information is power, and we are in a race against the clock," Jessica Tisch, commissioner of the city's department of information technology and telecommunications, told City & State New York. "To fight the coronavirus pandemic, we need not only more medical equipment and testing, but also more data in real time. 

"This portal will empower New Yorkers to build an unprecedented data set that will reveal the spread of this virus throughout New York City and enable city agencies to swiftly and effectively respond to the outbreak and communicate with affected members of the public," she said.

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