A three-minute online risk assessment exercise is now available to help users gauge their risk of exposure to COVID-19 at private or public gatherings. The Toronto-based National Institute on Ageing developed the freely available tool in consultation with health and epidemiological specialists and with the financial support of the Canadian government.
In keeping with the research centre’s mandate to promote policies and practices for the financial, physical, psychological and social well-being of an aging population, the COVID-19 visit risk calculator is intended to support people of all ages and states of health to navigate the evolving late stages of the pandemic, in which rules are changing, more people are returning to public places and it is not easily apparent who has been fully vaccinated. Through the assessment exercise, users may clarify, better identify and minimize the risks they face and/or pose to others.
“Throughout the pandemic, people across Canada have been trying their best to understand how to safely visit and gather with others when allowed to do so,” observes Michael Nicin, executive director of the National Institute of Ageing, which operates from Ryerson University.
The assessment procedure involves a series of questions about the users and the venue or gathering they wish to attend in order to assign a level of risk — low, moderate, high or very high — for the proposed activity. Along with the initial three-minute questionnaire, a 10-minute guide with more detailed information about public health considerations and COVID-19 exposures risks is offered.
“The Government of Canada is pleased to support the National Institute on Ageing’s COVID-19 visit risk calculator, which provides Canadians with an additional tool to evaluate their individual risk of COVID-19 and make informed decisions to protect their health and the health of others,” affirms Patty Hajdu, Canada’s Minister of Health.