The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is exploring big data as a tool to mitigate the potential risk of new Ebola cases in the U.S. by monitoring travel from affected regions, FedScoop reported Tuesday.
Billy Mitchell reports that CDC is using BioMosaic to forecast, track and disrupt the spread of disease in an effort to leverage data on health, population and migration and will apply the same tool to target the Ebola epidemic.
“We have the near real-time availability of the global air transportation network, and we’re able to identify, and in a sense target, the risk populations, the diaspora populations from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea,” said Marty Cetron, director of CDC’s division of global migration and quarantine.
The report said data includes flight information from the International Air Transport Association and passport logs from the Department of Homeland Security.
Cetron noted that geo-coded data sets of different types and from different sources aggregate to create a mosaic map of the U.S. that supports visualization and query functions.
Mitchell writes that CDC “funnels” at-risk travelers into select airports, where they undergo health screening, and monitors them through the incubation period.
CDC also uses algorithms to protect personally identifiable information, Cetron said.