Photo Credit: Cynthia Goldsmith, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Health Tracking Network
There is little solid scientific knowledge about how influenza, the common cold and stomach flu spread and how to protect against them because the necessary research has not been done, according to researchers at Interdisciplinary Scientific Research, a research and consulting firm in Seattle. As a result, in rigorous evaluations, strategies recommended by medical experts to avoid these illnesses have not consistently reduced rates of illness.
Interdisciplinary Scientific Research launched the Health Tracking Network in April 2011 with the following goals:
1) Identify factors related to common illnesses.
2) Promote members' health by enabling them to track their personal health, fitness, and other variables easily.
3) Generate donations to charities chosen by members.
4) Provide researchers access to a high-quality sample of respondents for scientific survey questions at low cost.
Participation is anonymous.
- PRINCIPAL SCIENTIST: Devon Brewer
- SCIENTIST AFFILIATION: Interdisciplinary Scientific Research
- DATES: Ongoing
- PROJECT TYPE: Observation
- COST: Free
- GRADE LEVEL: 18+ years old
- TIME COMMITMENT: Less than 1 hour per week
- HOW TO JOIN:
Citizen scientists can join the Health Tracking Network by registering at the Web site. After registering, there are health surveys to fill out as well as symptom update reports that can be filed weekly. Participants are awarded points for their participation, and, once accumulated, Interdisciplinary Scientific Research turns these points into donations to one of a number of charities.