Web based surveillance systems could improve disease detection and the response to emerging disease events

Milinovich, Gabriel J. & Hu, Wenbiao (2013) Web based surveillance systems could improve disease detection and the response to emerging disease events. BMJ, 347(f4276).

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Abstract

The Chinese government should be commended for its open, concerted, and rapid response to the recent H7N9 influenza outbreak. However, the first known case was not reported until 48 days after disease onset.1 Although the difficulties in detecting the virus and the lack of suitable diagnostic methods have been the focus of discussion,2 systematic limitations that may have contributed to this delay have hardly been discussed. The detection speed of surveillance systems is limited by the highly structured nature of information flow and hierarchical organisation of these systems. Flu surveillance usually relies on notification to a central authority of laboratory confirmed cases or presentations to sentinel practices for flu-like illness. Each step in this pathway presents a bottleneck at which information and time can be lost; this limitation must be dealt with...

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 68100
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1136/bmj.f4276
ISSN: 1756-1833
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Epidemiology (111706)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Deposited On: 05 Mar 2014 22:43
Last Modified: 19 Nov 2014 03:38

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