Speak up and help beat coronavirus (COVID-19)

1 Sep 2021 10:15 AM

We are seeking volunteers to take part in a study at the forefront of new and emerging science and technology.

Take 5 minutes of your time to submit your voice sounds and contribute to COVID-19 research.

We will explore how algorithms can use voice data, including cough recordings, to detect COVID-19.

Using voice sounds to identify if someone is more likely to need a test could help us find more cases, and help slow the spread of COVID-19 as we follow the roadmap of easing lockdown restrictions.

Taking part

You may have found out about this study because you took part in another COVID-19 research study. If so, see the relevant study below for more information on taking part:

If you found out about the study another way, please continue reading this section for information about taking part.

Anyone over the age of 18 who has had a COVID-19 test (lateral flow or PCR) within the past 72 hours can take part. You’ll need your NHS test barcode ID to take part. If you used an at-home test kit you must have registered your result online.

If you’d like to take part in this study and have recently had an NHS COVID-19 test you should use your own laptop, desktop computer, smartphone or tablet to visit speakuptobeatcovid.uk. If your test was part of another study, see the ‘Already taking part in COVID-19 research’ section for more information.

You’ll then be asked:

The form will ask a few basic questions about you and your health. These questions, such as your height or first language, are all things that can affect how your voice sounds.

You’ll need to record a short series of sounds using the microphone on your phone, tablet, laptop or desktop computer.

This will include a forced cough, breathing sounds and a defined sentence. Guidance on screen will help you through these steps. It should take you 5 to 10 minutes to complete.

This study will not offer any medical advice. The sole purpose of the study is to collect research data.

To take part, you need:

It is important that you submit your information no later than 72 hours after your COVID-19 test.

You should only submit your voice sounds while you are alone. Do not submit your voice sounds if you are in a vehicle or room with any other people.

Additional information

Potential risks

One of the voice sounds we will ask you to record is a forced cough. Coughing is a potential risk to others around you. Please make sure that you only submit your voice sounds after you have left the testing site, when you are alone in either your vehicle or a room. Do not submit your voice sounds if you are in a vehicle or room with any other persons.

Changing your mind

It is up to you to decide if you would like to take part in this study. If you decide to take part but change your mind when completing the form, you can exit the website at any stage. Voice recordings and information that are not submitted are not retained.

To withdraw from the study, contact ciab2021@dhsc.gov.uk and quote your NHS test barcode number, or equivalent test/study ID if you are taking part in another study. You must keep your NHS test barcode number or study ID as this is the only way we will be able to identify your data.

Benefitting from taking part in the study

There are no monetary or other direct benefits to you from taking part in this study. However, the information you contribute may be useful in the fight against COVID-19.

If something goes wrong or you wish to complain

If you have any questions or concerns about any aspect of the study, would like to report an adverse event or if you wish to complain formally, you can email ciab2021@dhsc.gov.uk.

How the information will be used

We will use the information that you submit on the website for research purposes only. Researchers will process audio files from your recordings and the information that you provide. You can learn more about the use of information collected as part of this study by reading the privacy notice on the study website.

Already taking part in COVID-19 research

If you found out about this study after taking a COVID-19 test as part of another COVID-19 research study, you can also take part.

It is important that you submit your information no later than 72 hours after your COVID-19 test.

ONS COVID-19 infection survey (CIS) participants 

If you’re a participant in the ONS CIS study, you can participate in this study by visiting speakuptobeatcovid.uk/ons after reviewing the participant information above.

You’ll need your ONS CIS COVID-19 test barcode, which was attached to the COVID-19 test you took as part of the ONS CIS study.

If you do not have the test barcode from your last ONS CIS test and you wish to take part, please wait until your next ONS CIS test, take note of your barcode and then make a submission within 72 hours of that test.

COVID-19 challenge study (COV-CHIM01) participants 

If you’re a participant in the COVID-19 challenge study (COV-CHIM01), you can participate in this study by visiting speakuptobeatcovid.uk/challenge after reviewing the participant information above.

You’ll need your challenge study ID, which will have been provided to you by the challenge study team.

Review of the study

The National Statistician’s Data Ethics Advisory Committee and the Cambridge South and Nottingham NHS Research Ethics Committee have approved this study. Findings of the study will be published in due course.