In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a team of Mathematica data scientists, software developers, and epidemiologists developed the 19 and Me COVID-19 risk calculator, enabling users to estimate their individual risk scores for COVID-19.
Xindi (Cindy) Hu
- Environmental health
- Predictive analytics
- Geospatial analytics
- Data visualization
- Population Health
- Health Information Technology and Analytics
- International Research
- Energy and Climate
- Water and Sanitation
Xindi (Cindy) Hu is an expert in applying geospatial data and analyses to support evidence-based policymaking. Her research focuses on primary interventions to improve population health through improved environmental quality and diet. In 2020, to support COVID-19 decision making, she and her collaborators developed an interactive web-based app for individual risk assessment, 19 and Me, which ranks first in Google search results for “COVID risk calculator” and was featured in Nature Technology Feature.
Hu applies her training to a range of projects in support of federal, state, and nongovernment clients. Using methods that include quasi-experimental design, predictive analytics, and machine-learning models, she provides expertise in the application of innovative technical solutions for clients including the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockefeller Foundation, Water Research Foundation, and the state government of Maryland. Hu currently serves as technical lead for a multisite wastewater surveillance study to assess the policy value of this novel data source in curbing the COVID-19 pandemic. The analysis informs a public health decision framework combining wastewater viral load with a suite of public health indicators, including cases, vaccination rate, population mobility, test positivity, health care use, and proxy measures.
Before joining Mathematica in 2018, Hu was a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard University, where she earned her Sc.D. in risk and decision sciences from the T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Her research has been published in journals such as Environmental Health Perspectives, Environmental Science & Technology Letters, and the Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology, and received media coverage from the Washington Post, CNN, and Reuters.