08 December, 2010

Undiagnosed Illness in Uganda, Measles in Argentina, and HealthMap at the ISDS Conference

Scientists work to identify the illness that has killed 38 people in northern Uganda. http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hgmieXl3QCUDRkdH0Z12UD704bFg?docId=CNG.6a0a014a69f4ce1afd31a8eefff9f2b8.441
Possible pneumonic plague in Northern Uganda Leaves 38 Dead

Last week, we reported that a mysterious illness had left 13 dead in northern Uganda. This week, the death toll has risen to 38 with dozens hospitalized, yet officials are still uncertain as to the cause, although tentative testing have confirmed it as pneumonic plague. Ebola, typhoid and several other diseases have been ruled out. The first case was identified in early November and since, over 90 people have been treated.  Symptoms include severe headaches and dizziness and eventually bloody diarrhea and vomiting. Officials say the disease has been detected in five districts in the northern part of the country. However, with vast impoverishment and inadequate health facilities, it may take weeks before response teams arrive and implement control efforts.

Alert for Measles in Buenos Aires

After 12 years without a registered case of measles in Buenos Aires, 17 cases have been reported since August.  The minister of health has helped initiate a national vaccination campaign in hopes of preventing the further spread of this disease. The province of Buenos Aires expects to be rid of the virus soon.

HealthMap at the 9th Annual ISDS Conference

Several HealthMap team members gave oral presentations at the International Society for Disease Surveillance’s 9th annual conference in Park City, Utah last week. In addition, HealthMap had a table where conference attendees could learn more about the system and sign-up to receive our free daily email alerts. The following oral presentations were given by members of our group (please email us for more information about any of these abstracts, or if interested in receiving our customizable email alerts):

Emily Chan - - Forecasting High Priority Surveillance Regions: a Socioeconomic Model
Annie Gatewood-Hoen - - Effect of Expanded Recommendations for Pediatric Seasonal Influenza Vaccination: An International Comparison
Sumiko Mekaru - - Anticipatory Surveillance for Mass Gatherings: A Novel Application of Mass Media Surveillance
Rumi Chunara - - OutbreakMD: Tracking and Identifying Disease Outbreaks in Post-earthquake Haiti

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