Interactive Risk Assessment Calculator

Thinking about which activities you can and should participate in during COVID-19 can be overwhelming. A few weeks ago, one of our team members wrote about using a “risk-benefit” matrix to think about these choices. We thought it would be useful to give everyone a chance to make their own matrix.

So (with thanks to initial drafting and help from reader Nathaniel Seelen) we have created this risk assessment calculator. This spreadsheet allows you to assign the personal benefit you get from activities you partake in, then arranges those activities according to risk level in a matrix to help you decide which activities are worth it. Simply make a copy of the spreadsheet in your Google Drive to start making decisions!

Below, we include examples of risk calculations from a few of our team members to help you get started. The total risk and total benefit numbers give you an idea of the overall value and risk associated with the all of activities you choose to do in a two week period. Total risk is calculated by adding up the TMA risk factor for each activity you mark with “yes” (to indicate that you have done or will do that activity in a two week period). Total benefit is calculated similarly by adding up the personal benefit factors you assign to each activity.

General Notice

Because this interactive is largely about choices between non-essential leisure activities, we wanted to acknowledge that it does not take into account the risk that people are forced to take on due to their occupational, familial, or social circumstances. Please see the asterisk below for more information about the community risk involved in selected activities.


These are activities that our team has deemed particularly risky to community members, especially to essential workers and marginalized populations who may have more limited access to health care services and may be at higher risk for developing severe COVID symptoms. While our interactive limits its calculation of risk to the likelihood that participating in a given activity could expose you or your loved ones to COVID, we strongly urge you to take community risk into consideration as well. A non-essential leisure activity which exposes you to COVID could also ultimately increase risk of exposure for those who might have less control over their risk of exposure due to occupational, familial, and social roles they must take on.

Example 1:

Link to the calculator

Total Benefit: 99

Total Risk: 48

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Example 2:

Link to the calculator

Total Benefit: 72

Total Risk: 27