Thrive Health wins Doctors of BC award for app
April 14, 2021
VANCOUVER – Each year, Doctors of BC recognizes individuals and organizations who have made “outstanding contributions to the profession, to patients, and to the healthcare system” through their Excellence in Health Promotion Awards. For 2020, Thrive Health is the Corporate Award recipient for the BC COVID-19 Support App & BC COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool.
The annual awards program honours recipients who, through “ingenuity and creativity,” produce solutions for “positive, long-term improvement” of the health and safety of British Columbians. With the advent of COVID-19 over the last year, many 2020 recipients are additionally recognized for innovative and resilient initiatives that have enabled BC’s healthcare system to adapt and respond efficiently to the pandemic as it evolves.
Thrive Health developed the BC COVID-19 Support App & BC COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool in partnership with the BC Government, Ministry of Health, and BC Centre for Disease Control to offer citizens trusted, personalized information about the pandemic, and to provide tools for self-assessment and symptom tracking.
With the app, which is accessible through the web or on mobile, users can access daily COVID-19 cases statistics, the latest updates from BC’s public health leadership, and community resources and education. Users can also complete a daily COVID-19 Check-In to record symptoms – even if they feel well – and answer questions on recent travel and/or exposure to someone who has been positively diagnosed with COVID-19.
The self-assessment tool, which also has users answer questions on symptoms, travel, and exposure, is included in the COVID-19 Check-In and is also accessible as a separate web platform. WorkSafeBC has included the self-assessment tool as part of their official COVID-19 Safety Plan for employers to follow, and the tool is currently in use by thousands of organizations across the province for employee and patron screening.
The adoption and impact of both the app and self-assessment tool has been considerable and continues to grow. Over 10% of BC’s population have downloaded the app on their mobile devices, and together the app and the self-assessment tool have had over 10 million visits since their March 2020 launch. The guidance provided through the self-assessment tool has also had a measurable impact on users’ intention to access additional healthcare resources such as 8-1-1 and virtual care; through an optional survey, users have reported a near 50% decrease in intention to access these services when the tool gave them advice for how to proceed according to their symptoms or situational risk.
This impact on user intention has significantly decreased the burden that would have otherwise been placed on these resources over the past year, freeing up more bandwidth for citizens that need them most.
As much as the BC COVID-19 Support App and the BC COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool were developed in response to the pandemic, they were developed under the belief that all individuals deserve the same access to updated health information, regardless of a pandemic event. These innovative tools have produced unprecedented, streamlined communication channels between BC’s public health leadership and citizens – both symptomatic and asymptomatic.
This impact signals strong potential for ongoing innovation to further the communication benefits of digital tools for government and public health authorities in a post-pandemic world.