Disease Surveillance in the Journal of Tropical Medicine and Health
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Background: The study demonstrates the potential in using newspaper information as a proxy for monitoring dengue fever outbreaks in India.

Online newspapers are being considered as sources of information on disease surveillance, early outbreak detection, and epidemiology research. Our objective is to understand the complex dengue epidemiology and discover inter-relationships between dengue fever and local social-environmental factors by mining information from local Indian news articles.

Results: We search and extract articles from the newspaper database, LexisNexis. News articles related to dengue fever in India are analyzed together with local environmental, climate, and population data in both temporally and spatially to study disease epidemiology. We also examine the influence of newsworthiness for constructing a disease surveillance system. In terms of temporal aspects, dengue outbreaks follow consistent patterns every year. However, for many areas, this application is frustrated by the relatively small numbers of news articles.

Conclusions: The study has advanced capabilities in producing approaches that provide for richer interpretations of textual information provided in newspaper articles. Such approaches appear particularly well suited for developing countries with relatively poor medical infrastructures and records.

Publication Summary

  • Geosyntec Authors: Yiding Zhang
  • All Authors: Yiding Zhang, Geosyntec Consultants; Motomu Ibaraki, Franklin W. Schwartz
  • Title: Disease Surveillance using Online News: An Extended Study of Dengue Fever in India
  • Event or Publication: Publication
  • Practice Areas: Groundwater Assessment and Remediation
  • Citation: Yiding Zhang, Ph.D. (California) coauthored a paper entitled "Disease Surveillance using Online News: An Extended Study of Dengue Fever in India" that was published in the journal Tropical Medicine and Health on December 11, 2019.
  • Date: December 11, 2019
  • Publication Type: Journal Article