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Neura’s COVID-19 Emergency Response System paves the way for intelligent and data-driven pandemic response

Neura’s platform fuses epidemiological and behavior data together to create a comprehensive understanding of transmission hot spots, population density, seeding and spreading indicators, and social distancing adherence, to empower governments, municipalities, and organizations. 

Background

As each new wave of COVID-19 brings a new round of panic, unknowns, and lockdowns around the world, and countries like the United States seeing well over 200,000 cases in a single day for weeks on end, there is a need for as much intelligence as possible regarding the spread of coronavirus.

While news outlets, medical facilities, and governments publish as much information as they can regarding positive cases, deaths, and hospital capacity, however, there is little to no information regarding the parameters that truly help curb the spread when it comes down to COVID-19 transmission.

As each new wave of COVID-19 roars into the center stage, the World Health Organization has consistently reported new daily case records above 600,000 a day worldwide. With almost half of those cases occurring in Europe, they are seeing a far more detrimental wave approaching.

Predictions and behavioral projections provide the only viable solution for breaking the chain of infection instead of pursuing a slow, reactionary policy. Despite the deployment of a vaccine, a myriad of challenges persist, including the very real reality that full vaccination of the entire population will take months, if not years.

Challenge

The municipality we worked with was facing a host of large scale issues adding to the rapid increase of cases within their city limits, causing problems concerned with employees ability to adequately work from home with all the resources they needed to be productive, individuals, families, and pairs in self quarantine needing to fend for themselves under strict seclusion orders, children going to and from school while bearing in mind the risk associated, and return from abroad travelers varying in their degree of regulation observance.

With businesses facing mounting losses and school openings further complicating efforts to limit COVID-19 exposure, the city needed an effective solution that struck a balance between livelihoods and safety. Neura had to provide insight on where to apply critical resources, how and what to communicate to the public regarding regulations and safety, and how to get the city safely back to working order, even if it meant adhering to a new normal.

The city had previously taken appropriate action laid out by government officials and implemented measures provided by the authorities to mitigate and monitor the spread of COVID-19. The typical tools used in most cities, such as screenings, communication, and public safety enforcement were utilized to the best of their ability.

However, the city we worked with understood that this simply wasn’t enough, their cases were rising and their citizens were distraught. The black-and-white view slung between reactionary and overly-cautious with no middle ground didn’t work for them. Despite precautions taken and government guidelines followed, over 9.2% of the population became infected; a rate that was considered too high.

The municipality had seen a sharp 300% increase in the number of new coronavirus cases within a twenty day period, and the cases remained at a high plateau for ten days. At this point the city started implementing action based on Neura’s behavioral intelligence insights. Immediate mandates taken resulted in a drastic decrease in cases. Within twenty-three days cases dropped to the lowest they had been: 360% less than when at their peak.

Taking Action

In order to help move this city from a danger zone and into a safer environment, we deployed our COVID-19 Emergency Response System.

 

This model predicts behavior to help monitor and control the spread of COVID-19, centering on predictive and preventative information, which can help with interrupting interpersonal transmission, provide insights on high-risk personnel and information relevant for communicating critical information to the relevant authorities regarding hotspots of activity that can trigger an outbreak. Our technology includes multiple facets: dashboards, data insights, proximity indexes, and identification of virus transmission zones. This can safely help governments, businesses, and municipalities deal with changing coronavirus regulations and adjust measures accordingly.

 

Our platform fuses human behavior data with epidemiological data to generate indicators as it occurs in real-time, which is used to determine where and when to deploy critical resources. Signals are based on modeling, heat maps, social-distancing adherence, density, and overall population behavior which gives visibility into micro and macro population trends.

 

The city we worked with utilized Neura’s robust platform and thus instead of relying on just three basic tools to monitor and control the spread of the virus, they used different tools for monitoring hotspots, potential danger zones, super-spreader events, and risky behavioural patterns. Using our behavioral intelligence technology gives visibility into key population movement and metrics such as if people are staying home, when they become mobile, the distances they travel from home, and how long they spend out of the house. This information was used to determine where and when to deploy additional resources, where the use of targeted campaigns were necessary for additional regulation adherence and awareness, high transmission zones, regulation non-adherence, insights on where return from abroad travelers were going, and more.

 

Neura identified four neighborhoods that were seeing a 30% daily increase of travelers arriving from abroad. Neura’s team advised that these four neighborhoods run campaigns targeting the new arrivals in these neighborhoods on isolation requirements. Further, educational campaigns were run regarding the importance of wearing a mask and social distancing for post isolation regulation education.

 

We also discovered an increase in guideline non-adherence which went from 25% to 30% and jumped to 60% during the holidays in a specific neighborhood. Due to this, the municipality launched a campaign specifically targeted at this area to raise awareness on the safety requirements for staying at home.

 

Neura’s platform pinpointed the highest risk areas, specifically certain zones including particular industrial zones and school centers that had higher transmission risk depending on the time in the day. Authorities directly contacted citizens and regulation officials in these areas for awareness education, law enforcement, and to set up private screening tests.

 

The industrial zone had busier times between 7:00-10:00AM, the shopping center had busier times between 10:00-12:00PM, and the shopping center was busiest from 12:00-3:00PM. With Neura’s insights this municipality had data-driven awareness about the most dangerous high risk areas in order to understand where extra enforcement, education, screening and testing centers were most needed.

 

By using Neura’s response system, taking preventative measures, and gaining deep insight on coronavirus movement, this city went from a red zone to green with 70% more efficiency in first responder resource allocation and cases per day dropped by 270%.

Results

70%

Increase in Efficiency

More efficiency in first responder resource allocation


360%

Decrease in Total Cases

Cases of coronavirus decreased dramatically per day with the integration of Neura’s system response.



Create a Safe Environment for Citizens While Safety and Systematically Reopening the Economy

Neura empowers organizations to drive strategic, data-driven decisions based on large scale human behavior and activity signals. Its Behavior Intelligence Platform transforms vast amounts of anonymized data into actionable, impactful and monetizable insights based on population behavior and lifestyle.