Search Results for: computational epidemiology group

Scientists find link between increases in local temperature and antibiotic resistance

Over-prescribing has long been thought to increase antibiotic resistance in bacteria. But could much bigger environmental pressures be at play? While studying the role of climate on the distribution of antibiotic resistance across the geography of the U.S., a multidisciplinary team of epidemiologists from Boston Children’s Hospital found that higher local temperatures and population densities…

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News Note: Norovirus outbreak threatens the Olympics

The 2018 Winter Olympics have brought nearly 3,000 delegates from 206 countries together in PyeongChang, South Korea. But just a week after kicking off on February 8, the games and its attendees are already being interrupted by a fast-spreading norovirus outbreak. Norovirus is an extremely infectious disease transmitted through food, water or by touching a…

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Digital doctoring, big data and AI: Five takeaways

Big data and artificial intelligence are reshaping our world. Earlier this month, at Computefest 2018, organized by the Institute for Applied Computational Science at Harvard University, held the symposium, “The Digital Doctor: Health Care in an Age of AI and Big Data.” Speakers were: Finale Doshi-Velez, PhD, Assistant Professor of Computer Science, Harvard University Matt…

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Cellphone data reveals Hurricane Maria’s impact on travel in Puerto Rico

Nearly two months after Hurricane Maria swept through Puerto Rico, the infrastructural damage remains evident — today, FEMA estimates that only 41 percent of the island has had power restored. But the impact on human behavior is just beginning to be understood. Research collaborators from the Boston Children’s Hospital Computational Epidemiology Group, MIT Media Lab…

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Predicting influenza outbreaks faster with a digitally-empowered wearable device

The Thermia online health educational tool, developed at Boston Children’s Hospital, has enabled one-month-faster prediction of seasonal influenza outbreaks in China, via its digital integration with a commercially-available wearable thermometer. The findings appear in a new study published in the American Journal of Public Health.  “The fact that we were able to predict influenza outbreaks faster than China’s…

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How social media and a mumps outbreak teach us that vaccines build herd immunity

Residents of Arkansas have been under siege by a viral threat that is typically preventable through vaccination. Since August 2016, more than 2,000 people have been stricken with mumps, an infection of the major salivary glands that causes uncomfortable facial swelling. The disease is highly contagious but can usually be prevented by making sure that children (or adults) have…

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Plugging gaps in Zika surveillance with online news reports

As the Zika epidemic continues to unfold, most affected countries are flying blind: they have limited government disease surveillance systems in place to track new cases. That leaves public health officials unable to estimate how fast Zika is spreading, where the hotspots are and when the outbreak will peak — much less contain it and…

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My work, my life: John Brownstein, PhD

Boston Children’s Hospital’s new chief innovation officer, John Brownstein, PhD, is an epidemiologist by training and a founding father of the growing field of digital epidemiology—the use of digital (especially social and mobile) data from a variety of sources to detect and track disease and promote health. As co-founder of HealthMap and director of the…

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So, what’s your digital phenotype?

Ideally, we’re all supposed to see our doctor once a year for a checkup. It’s an opportunity to see how we’re doing from a health perspective, address any concerns or issues that we may have and catch any emerging issues before they become true problems. But those visits are really only one-time, infrequent snapshots of…

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What’s the big deal about big data?

To kick off the final panel of the Global Pediatric Innovation Summit + Awards 2014, moderator Paul Solman (above), business and economics correspondent for PBS Newshour, launched straight into the question: What are we in healthcare doing with big data, and what should we be doing with it? John Brownstein, PhD, director of Boston Children’s…

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