17 September 2014 | News | By BioSpectrum Bureau
Google earth to predict malaria
Google Earth Outreach, is donating to the UCSF $100,000 to develop this platform
Singapore: Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) are developing an online platform that can be used to predict malaria transmission with the help of Google earth. Their goal is to enable poor countries to plan more targeted and effective campaigns against the mosquito-borne disease which kills more than 600,000 people in a year.
With the malaria prediction platform, local health workers will be able to upload their own data like where and when malaria cases have been occurring. This can be combined with real-time satellite data on weather and other environmental conditions within the earth engine to predict where new cases are most likely to occur. This will help in taking the necessary steps to prevent the disease in a predicted area.
Google earth outreach is donating to the UCSF $100,000 to develop this platform.
The new tool will be piloted in Swaziland, a South African country. Researchers also plan to make the tool available to health workers in other countries, those working with the Global Health Group's Malaria Elimination Initiative. This tool can also be adapted to predict other infectious diseases.