Kinsa Health has developed smart thermometers and a paired smartphone application to help in predicting COVID-19 outbreaks as the world struggles to contain the pandemic. The company has produced and sold more than one million of its smart thermometers in the US.

Kinsa Health’s technology uses interactive maps and was able to accurately predict flu outbreaks nearly two weeks before the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) FluView surveillance tool. The CDC’s tool relies on weekly reports from physicians and hospitals about symptoms witnessed by them during the previous week, while Kinsa Health’s technology includes a real-time tracking tool.

The company is using its technology to develop an early warning system to help healthcare organisations to predict COVID-19 outbreaks. It maintains a database of expected flu cases by geographic regions in the US. If the actual figure exceeds the estimates, it can be an indication of a local COVID-19 outbreak.

Such early detection will help the healthcare system to predict potential outbreaks and make necessary preparations to meet an increase in service demand.

Kinsa Health has also developed daily maps with its millions of temperature data points to identify areas witnessing a spike in fever cases. This includes South Florida, which became a COVID-19 hotspot, days after the region was flagged in the map.