Re-examining COVID-19 Self-Reported Symptom Tracking Programs in the United States: Updated Framework Synthesis

Miranda Lynn Janvrin*, Jessica Korona-Bailey, Tracey Pérez Koehlmoos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Early in the pandemic, in 2020, Koehlmoos et al completed a framework synthesis of currently available self-reported symptom tracking programs for COVID-19. This framework described relevant programs, partners and affiliates, funding, responses, platform, and intended audience, among other considerations. Objective: This study seeks to update the existing framework with the aim of identifying developments in the landscape and highlighting how programs have adapted to changes in pandemic response. Methods: Our team developed a framework to collate information on current COVID-19 self-reported symptom tracking programs using the “best-fit” framework synthesis approach. All programs from the previous study were included to document changes. New programs were discovered using a Google search for target keywords. The time frame for the search for programs ranged from March 1, 2021, to May 6, 2021. Results: We screened 33 programs, of which 8 were included in our final framework synthesis. We identified multiple common data elements, including demographic information such as race, age, gender, and affiliation (all were associated with universities, medical schools, or schools of public health). Dissimilarities included questions regarding vaccination status, vaccine hesitancy, adherence to social distancing, COVID-19 testing, and mental health. Conclusions: At this time, the future of self-reported symptom tracking for COVID-19 is unclear. Some sources have speculated that COVID-19 may become a yearly occurrence much like the flu, and if so, the data that these programs generate is still valuable. However, it is unclear whether the public will maintain the same level of interest in reporting their symptoms on a regular basis if the prevalence of COVID-19 becomes more common.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere31271
JournalJMIR Formative Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus
  • Digital health
  • Framework analysis
  • Information resources
  • Monitoring
  • Patient-reported outcome measures
  • Self-reported
  • Surveillance
  • Symptom tracking
  • Synthesis


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