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Coronavirus: 'Wrong time to lift restrictions' says Greenhalgh

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Australian scientists have developed a new app that can detect coronavirus by someone coughing into their phone.

The app works by recording the sound of the cough and then using AI to estimate whether COVID-19 is the cause of the cough.

By developing this app, the scientists hope to cut the use of swab tests.

In recent tests, the app had a 90 percent success rate.

Such is the success of the app, Pfizer – who developed one of the vaccines – has offered to buy the firm behind the software.

The firm in question, ResApp, loratadine dosage twice a day has also developed an algorithm that could be used to detect other respiratory diseases.

ResApp’s chief executive Dr Tony Keating said: “That’s the big breakthrough that we’ve made over the last couple of months.

“We’ve been able to match coughs down to positive COVID-19 results. So we’ve found signature in cough sounds that give us an indication of Covid.”

While the technology is impressive, this is not the first time the diagnosis of COVID-19 has been attempted through the sound of a cough.

Researchers from Cambridge are crowdsourcing recordings of breathing and coughs for its own Covid-19 sounds app.

Furthermore, in 2020, MIT researchers published a paper where they claimed to be able to spot over 98 percent of infections.

Dr Keating added: “The computer is able to really pull apart that cough sound. There may be minute signatures in that cough sound that are different between a healthy person and one with COVID-19.”

Meanwhile, the NHS has decided to remove social distancing in their waiting rooms in England.

These form part of the stepping down rules applying to NHS GP surgeries, hospitals, and emergency departments.

Despite this, people will still be encouraged to wear face masks.

NHS England bosses have said their rules needed to adapt with COVID-19 as the virus is likely to remain an endemic for the time being.

Christopher Hopson, Chief Executive of NHS Providers, said: “We need to keep reviewing our infection control measures.

“We know at the moment that they are very important to protect vulnerable people but they also make it a lot more complex to run a hospital, get through care backlogs and provide emergency care.”

The NHS is facing one of its toughest tests since the pandemic began, trying to manage Covid care and manage its growing waiting list.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said of the situation: “The NHS and social care are facing unprecedented pressure because of the pandemic.”

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