HCPH Press Release
Harris County Public Health and Local HealthTech Company Luminare Partner to Launch COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool to Help Prioritize Testing for High-Risk Individuals
HOUSTON, TX // March 27, 2020 — Harris County Public Health (HCPH) and Luminare Inc, in collaboration with Microsoft for Startups, developed QuickScreen, an online assessment tool designed for individuals to provide guidance on whether they should be tested for coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“We understand that there are a lot of questions and misinformation about coronavirus disease,” said Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, executive director and local health authority for Harris County Public Health. “This innovative tool will help individuals self-assess to understand if they are truly at risk for COVID-19 or if their symptoms could be related to another health condition.”
QuickScreen is an online, confidential and secure self-assessment tool that can be used at home. This web-based software is designed initially to serve the public in the Greater Houston area in accordance with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention Coronavirus guidelines.
The goal is to empower individuals to understand if they are at risk for COVID-19 and to seek medical attention accordingly so exposure to the community can be limited. In addition, the COVID-19 self-assessment platform will help decrease potential exposure to healthcare workers, avoid emergency room overcrowding, and allow efficient communication between the health department and the population at large.
“After years spent tackling sepsis, we have considerably built up our core product at Luminare and are now leveraging our expertise and understanding in that area to develop QuickScreen for COVID-19,” stated Luminare CEO & Co-Founder Dr. Sarma Velamuri. He added, “Our hope is that the QuickScreen web portal can help alleviate the stresses being placed on our community’s healthcare facilities and its workers who are on the front lines battling the spread of Coronavirus in Harris County and the region by giving individuals a better indication of whether or not they may need further testing.”
QuickScreen will provide an individual with recommendations, based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, on their symptoms and risk factors related to COVID- 19. The screening takes less than two minutes on average to complete when an individual has relevant health history available prior to accessing the web portal.
QuickScreen will be another step in keeping the Harris County community safe by quickly and accurately identifying who may need escalated testing and potential medical care to treat the onset of COVID-19. You can access QuickScreen by going to www.hcphtx.org/COVID-19 and www.readyharris.org.
Luminare, Inc. is part of the Texas Medical Center Innovation community and is officed at the TMC Innovation campus. Luminare provides software solutions to improve hospital efficiency, with their first product to reduce sepsis mortality and morbidity in the hospital setting.
Parties interested in obtaining access to the software platform should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Luminare specializes in building software that automates processes in hospitals so that patients receive timely and appropriate care. Luminare is recipient of the “Most Promising Web & IT Company” by the Rice University Jones School of business ‘17 and was participating in the CDC’s Interoperability Showcase at HIMSS 2020 on “Stopping sepsis through early detection” and is alumnus of the TMC’s Innovation Accelerator.
Our primary mission is to stop 250,000 deaths a year in US hospitals from sepsis. When COVID hit we decided to repurpose our sepsis platform and expertise to provide this service. The tool is free and available to communities, government organizations, and healthcare entities beyond Harris County for the purposes of COVID-19 self-assessment. For more information, please visit www.luminaremed.com.
ABOUT HARRIS COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH
Harris County Public Health (HCPH) is the health department for Harris County, the third most populous county in the nation. Throughout the years, HCPH has responded to public health issues such as rabies, mosquito-borne illnesses, air and water pollution, disease outbreaks, water and food-borne illnesses, natural disasters, tuberculosis, polio, and other communicable diseases. For its efforts, HCPH was named the 2016 Local Health Department of the year by the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO).