Friday, January 22, 2016 at 12pm – 1pm EST
Adam W. Crawley, MPH
Research Associate, Pandemics
Skoll Global Threats Fund
Citizen engagement in public health is being transformed through systems that enable users to directly report on symptoms of disease via email and smartphone technology. Participatory systems encourage routine submission of syndromic data by the general public. Participant data can be aggregated and shared in near real-time with users and health authorities. Rapid collection and dissemination of disease data provide early warning as clusters of symptoms are identified in time and space while the participatory approach provides an avenue for two-way communication in the event of health or other emergencies.
The Skoll Global Threats Fund, in partnership with HealthMap of Boston Children’s Hospital, has developed Flu Near You as a participatory influenza-like illness surveillance tool in the United States. SGTF has also supported the development of participatory surveillance systems in Thailand, Tanzania, and Brazil. Adam Crawley, a researcher with SGTF’s Pandemics team, will provide an overview of these emerging systems, share early results, and discuss future directions for this approach.