Frequently asked questions
Who created the ZOE Health Study?
The ZOE Health Study was created by ZOE – a health science company working in partnership with doctors and scientists working at King’s College London.
The app was initially used to study the symptoms of COVID-19 and track the spread of this virus. We’re now additionally looking at major diseases including cancer, dementia, heart disease and exploring the nutrition and lifestyle interventions that work in a real world setting.
This research is led by Prof. Tim Spector, professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London and director of TwinsUK.
What is the aim of the research?
The research aims to help scientists understand COVID-19 and other major health conditions and illnesses, with the following specific aims:
- Better identify and understand symptoms of COVID-19 including the rate of disease across the country and the impact of vaccines on transmission and symptoms.
- If you opted-in to wider health studies or joined the study after 2nd September 2021, your data can be used to investigate a wide range of health conditions, including other infectious diseases, dementia, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and more, which helps ZOE in its mission to improve human health
- We’re now additionally exploring nutrition and lifestyle interventions that work in a real world setting through optional user studies as part of our mission to improve human health.
- In the future, we hope we’ll be able to use this data to help the NHS support the sick, and individuals to live healthier lives. This app is not intended to be a diagnostic tool. For official advice about the coronavirus please visit the NHS website
Who will be using my data?
For all our studies:
- Your data is protected under GDPR, and can only be used for the purpose to which you consent.
- We always try to minimise the amount of personally identifiable information we collect (e.g. year of birth but not date of birth), while recognising that sometimes the research requires it.
ZOE is committed to helping people live to their fullest through understanding individual health responses in the real world and using that to personalise lifestyle recommendations.
The science that we generate using the data collected via this app will better empower ZOE to fulfil this mission and we believe that making the results of our research widely available maximises its positive scientific impact.
How long will my data be used for?
Because of the nature of the research we carry out, we are unable to set any particular time limit on the storage of your sensitive personal data, but we will keep it under regular review and ensure that it is kept no longer than necessary.
My app is frozen on a particular screen, what should I do?
If you're stuck on a screen and can't move forward, please try reducing the size of your text by changing the settings for large text on your device. This should allow you to see the button that will take you to the next screen.
How will my data be protected?
We take data security very seriously and enforce best practices to ensure your data is protected. This doesn't mean that there is no risk but we have taken every precaution to minimise that for you.
We are permitted to do this as this is all part of the research you consented to. Contributors can opt out at any time by emailing: email@example.com.
Will someone make money off my data?
While ZOE Global Ltd is a commercial entity, the ZOE COVID (now Health) Study app was built for free to support King's College London's vital COVID-19 research, and any data you provide will not be sold.
However, if you have opted in to our wider health studies research (not just COVID-19), ZOE is allowed to use aggregate data from our studies to develop commercial health products. In doing this, our studies help us achieve our mission to improve human health.
For more information, visit our Opting-in to ZOE’s wider health Studies Infosheet.
How can I delete my data?
If you would like us to stop processing your personal data, you may withdraw your consent at any time by selecting 'Delete my data' from the main menu in the app. This will withdraw any consents you’ve given and we’ll delete all your data.
If you opt in to wider health studies but later decide you only want to contribute to COVID-19 research, email us on firstname.lastname@example.org. We will remove all data from the health studies within 14 days.
To opt out of our COVID study, email us at email@example.com. When you withdraw your consent, we will delete all personal data we hold about you.
My password isn't working when I try to log in, what should I do?
You can reset your password using this link on a desktop browser where possible: https://api.covidradar.org/accounts/password/reset/
Please ensure that you enter the same email exactly that you used when creating an account, as you will otherwise not receive a password reset link. You can check which one you signed up with by seeing which account has been receiving emails from us.
The link may take up to an hour to appear in your inbox or junk folder. If this doesn't work, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What are ZOE’s ‘wider health studies’?
On the 2nd September 2021, ZOE launched its wider health studies initiative in the ZOE COVID Study. For those who opted-in the data will be used to study a wider range of health conditions beyond COVID-19.
The COVID-19 pandemic proved how critical our app-based data collection methods were in making new discoveries about disease. We’re now using the same methods and the help of our incredible contributors to fight all sorts of major diseases, including cancer, dementia, heart disease and more.
We’re additionally exploring nutrition and lifestyle interventions that work in a real world setting through optional user studies as part of our mission to improve human health.
Can I report symptoms on behalf of someone else, eg my family?
If you’re reporting for COVID, you may add multiple profiles on the app and report symptoms on behalf of someone else if you have their consent to do so. Please ensure that your app is updated to the latest version in order to do this.
What’s the new way of reporting my health in the app?
Please see this blog for more information about the new way of reporting: https://health-study.joinzoe.com/post/new-daily-report-usual-self
This new way of reporting allows us to measure regularly occurring symptoms, to reflect how you usually feel. It also personalises health reporting to each individual Contributor. If you have a chronic condition or daily-occurring symptoms, you don’t need to worry about repeatedly reporting the same symptoms, as they’ll be in place once you set up your Usual Self.
If you need to report a new symptom, you can select ‘I feel different from my Usual Self’ and then follow the process to log a new symptom in the app.
I'd like to see what symptoms are reported near me or across the country –how can I see what is going on?
Can someone under 18 use the app?
No one under 18 is able to use our app directly. However, as the parent or legal guardian of a child you may report for COVID on their behalf by adding them as an additional profile, provided that you follow the appropriate consent process as outlined in the app. For wider health studies, you can only report for yourself.
Why do I need to register with an email?
We use your email address so that if you lose your password we can send you a new one. You can use whatever email address you wish. By sharing your email address, we can also keep you up to date with latest updates from across the Health Study and wider ZOE.
I've spotted a bug, or would like to suggest a feature - where should I send it?
We welcome any and all feedback about our app in the relevant app store, or at email@example.com. We’re a small team and this is a not for profit initiative so please bear with us as we resolve any bugs that may appear.
I'm unable to create an account
If you’re having trouble creating an account, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can assist you.
I mistyped my email when registering for the app - what should I do?
If you uninstall and reinstall the app, you will be logged out of the app and you can try to create a new account with the correct email address.
How can I set a daily reminder to log my symptoms?
Our app will send you a notification each day to remind you to report, provided that you have notifications enabled in your phone settings. If you are unsure if you have notifications enabled, in the app menu, there will be a button labelled "Turn on reminders" where you can ensure your device settings are correct.
Will the app be available outside the UK and USA?
We are currently available in the UK and USA. We hope to release to other regions in the near future, based on an open-source approach. If you are interested in supporting the app – through development skills, local language expertise, or other skills – please let us know by emailing email@example.com.
Will you make this app available for those with limited sight?
We are aware that our app doesn’t currently meet some accessibility standards and are working to resolve these issues.
My app hasn’t updated to the latest version, what do I do?
You should try closing and reopening your app to trigger the new update. If this doesn’t work, check your device’s Apple App Store or Google Play Store to install the latest update.
Still have a question? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org