Mapping to Support Fine Scale Epidemiological Cholera Investigations: A Case Study of Spatial Video in Haiti
Andrew Curtis, Jason K. Blackburn, Sarah L. Smiley, Minmin Yen, Andrew Camilli, Meer Taifur Alam, Afsar Ali, and J. Glenn Morris
Article first published online: 03 Feb 2016 International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
ABSTRACT: The cartographic challenge in many developing world environments suffering a high disease burden is a lack of granular environmental covariates suitable for modeling disease outcomes. As a result, epidemiological questions, such as how disease diffuses at intra urban scales are extremely difficult to answer. This paper presents a novel geospatial methodology, spatial video, which can be used to collect and map environmental covariates, while also supporting field epidemiology. An example of epidemic cholera in a coastal town of Haiti is used to illustrate the potential of this new method. Water risks from a 2012 spatial video collection are used to guide a 2014 survey, which concurrently included the collection of water samples, two of which resulted in positive lab results “of interest” (bacteriophage specific for clinical cholera strains) to the current cholera situation. By overlaying sample sites on 2012 water risk maps, a further fifteen proposed water sample locations are suggested. These resulted in a third spatial video survey and an additional “of interest” positive water sample. A potential spatial connection between the “of interest” water samples is suggested. The paper concludes with how spatial video can be an integral part of future fine-scale epidemiological investigations for different pathogens.
Read the full publication at International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health