What is FluWatchers?

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Organization: Public Health Agency of Canada

Published: 2023-10-31

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FluWatchers is an online health monitoring platform that helps track the spread of flu and flu-like illness (like COVID-19) across Canada.  

Why is FluWatchers important? 

  • Traditional ways of tracking diseases require a person to see a health care practitioner and get tested
  • However, most people with mild flu-like symptoms don’t seek any medical care
  • The FluWatchers program captures information on these individuals to get a better sense of flu-like illness in the community

Who can participate? 

  • Anyone who lives in Canada can participate, and participants can also report on behalf of household members  

What do FluWatchers do?

  • Volunteers answer a quick and anonymous questionnaire each week on whether they’ve had a cough or fever or were healthy

What data traditional disease tracking provides

  • Death
  • Severe illness
  • Diagnosed illness

What data FluWatchers can provide

  • Undiagnosed illness
  • Mild illness
  • Healthy

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