Oxford University academics have launched a project to track the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. The tool, called the Oxford COVID-19 Government Response Tracker (OxCGRT), tracks 11 indicators to generate an index to compare the rigours of policy responses across countries around the world.
The speed and rigour of the COVID-19 pandemic response varies widely from country to country. Britain, for example, imposed stricter restrictions on Saturday alone, ordering bars and restaurants to close. However, Denmark, which has fewer confirmed COVID-19 cases, took similar steps about a week ago.
The index is available free of charge and currently contains data from 73 countries, including China, South Korea, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States. Scholars say it will continue to update throughout the crisis. The aim is to help policymakers and researchers understand the impact of interventions in different countries and to identify triggers for more or less stringent measures during public health crises.
Government interventions tracked by the index include school closures, workplace closures, public event cancellations, public transport closures, public information campaigns, restrictions on internal activities, international travel controls, fiscal measures, monetary measures, emergency health care investments, vaccine investments, and so on.
“Our index certainly doesn’t tell the whole story, but we believe the data we collect can help policymakers and public health professionals examine the robustness of government responses,” Thomas Hale, associate professor of global public policy and project leader at the institute, said in a statement. and know exactly what works in some cases and why. “