Digital Corona research to participate
With the eCOV study, Data4Life enabled digital data donation for a better understanding of the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines in everyday life
In 2020, a representative survey conducted by Data4Life showed that the Corona pandemic increased willingness to participate in medical studies and share data. With this in mind, and because of the subsequent COVID-19 vaccination campaign, Data4Life developed the eCOV study in 2021 with the goal of better understanding the course of the pandemic as well as the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccinations in everyday life.
All individuals 16 years of age and older, vaccinated or unvaccinated, were eligible to participate in the digital study. They were asked weekly about symptoms, vaccines administered, side effects that may have occurred, and coronavirus tests performed. The information participants provided in their Data4Life account via website or app was donated to the study in a pseudonymized and encrypted form. Data collection took place under real-world conditions (“real world evidence”).
In total, around 10,000 people participated in the eCOV study and donated their data for the study. The initial results of the study have already been published in an international scientific journal and are freely available at this link.
Details of the digital eCOV study
The aim of the study was to investigate:
- how effective the coronavirus vaccines are in everyday life
- how and when the effectiveness of the vaccines decreases
- how an infection progresses in vaccinated persons compared to unvaccinated persons
- what are typical side effects of coronavirus vaccination
- when and how often booster vaccinations are required
- the extent to which coronavirus testing helps detect infections early
While in other countries the involvement of the population in research - for example through the voluntary donation of data - is already established, in Germany we are still in the early stages with regard to “participatory research”. Data4Life has set itself the goal of using secure, digital solutions to give people in Germany the opportunity to actively participate in shaping scientific progress, regardless of their age, gender, health status, etc., and thereby democratize medical research.
We firmly believe that we can improve research and medicine with the help of people of all ages and demographics. A broad data basis is the foundation for this.