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UK’s COVID-19 risk prediction algorithm had a great start, but experts fear it won’t last

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Thomas Macaulay


An algorithm accurately predicted the risk of someone with COVID-19 becoming seriously ill during the first wave of the pandemic in England, according to new research. The British government-backed model was developed using anonymized data from more than 8 million adults in 1,205 general practices. It then analyzed factors including a person’s age, ethnicity, level of deprivation, body mass index, and existing medical conditions to predict their chance of catching COVID-19 and then dying or being hospitalized. The algorithm was tested on two sets of anonymized data, from January to April 2020 and from May 2020 to June 2020, to…

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