The COVID Risk Quiz uses two different parameters to tell you whether and when you need to get tested: 1) Your risk of having or getting infected with COVID-19, and 2) Your risk of spreading it to other people.
The Quiz figures out how high your risks are based on four inputs. Three of those inputs are protective measures that you can take against COVID-19:
Distancing (The Quiz captures this information by asking about close contacts.)
The fourth input is the prevalence of COVID-19 in your area.
Prevalence is the percentage of people in a population who have a disease. So if there are 100 people in your area and 10 of them have COVID-19, the prevalence of COVID-19 in your area is 10%.
Technically, the only way to determine the true prevalence of COVID-19 in a population is to test every single person in the population to see who has it and who doesn't. Since that's not feasible, the Quiz uses a sophisticated machine-learning model that looks at all of the available COVID-19 data for a particular state and county and develops a "predicted prevalence" for that location.
The Quiz uses those "four pillars" - vaccination, masking, distancing, and predicted prevalence - and combines them with information about your behavior over the past seven days and what you expect your behavior to be over the next seven days. The result is a calculated estimate of the following:
Your risk of getting COVID-19 over the past seven days.
Your risk of getting COVID-19 over the next seven days.
Your risk of spreading COVID-19 to others over the past seven days.
Your risk of spreading COVID-19 to others over the next seven days.
Based on those four risk factors, the Quiz determines whether you should consider getting tested for COVID-19.
Note: If you are in a US territory or outside of the US, the Quiz asks if you are in a COVID-19 hotspot. If you are not in a hotspot, the Calculator assumes that the prevalence of COVID-19 in your location is 1%. If you are in a hotspot, it assumes that the prevalence in your area is 3%.
DataRobot — The company that developed the machine-learning model behind the COVID Risk Quiz.