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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Mapping Healthy Communities and other Health GIS News

Young people in Buffalo are mapping their neighborhoods to see if they are conducive to walking, riding bikes and if they are safe. It's part of the Healthy Kids Healthy Communities, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The national program aimed at fighting childhood obesity. Buffalo is one of 50 communities participating. They collect data via GPS-enabled cell phone pictures and note comments on a clipboard. Those will go into a GIS. One interesting aspect: their comments and perspectives will be addd; this is not just quantitative data.

- Bufallo News

Malaria rates of U.S. military personnel born in western Africa were 44 times greater than rates for soldiers born in the U.S., according to a new study.

The highest malaria rates were found in service members from nations such as Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana, said Ellen Wertheimer, an epidemiologist at the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center (AFHSC) in Silver Spring, Md., and colleagues.

Notably, the infections were most likely linked to the soldiers' personal visits to their homelands and not a result of where they were deployed or on official assignment, the investigators wrote in the September issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Moreover, those who were infected were not sent to areas for deployment that have endemic maralia. The theory is that those from homeland with malaria endemic do not know they should take prophylactic medications and may not do so.

- MedPage Today

Another feature added in GI Monitor's latest release is the ability to connect with Foursquare, the leader in location-based check-ins.  Once connected, GI Monitor users can view their Foursquare check-ins through daily logs and interactive charts to make correlations between symptoms and locations.  Edward Shin, MD, Co-Founder of WellApps, notes, "Health doesn't just happen in the doctor's office.   Symptoms occur everywhere and both patients and physicians need to understand the impact of location.  Foursquare recognizes the importance of location in consumer health and allows us to make these potential correlations in a fun and engaging way."  Foursquare's Platform Evangelist, Akshay Patil, adds, "Layering health information onto real-world actions is an incredibly powerful combination.  We're super excited that WellApps is empowering people to do this."

The app is aimed at those with ITB and (IBD) Inflammatory Bowel Disease aka Crohn's and Colitis. I've got two friends who live with these diseases. Both are marathon runners. I'm curious as to their thoughts on if such an app would be helpful.

- press release

Reports of mosquito bites are up in the UK making the health agency concerned about malaria.

The Health Protection Agency (UK) has organised the Mosquito Recording Scheme to look into where and how mosquitoes live and breed.

And the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, with help from the HPA, has created Mosquito Watch, a voluntary reporting system geared towards collecting and analysing various specimens.

- BBC News

by Adena Schutzberg on 08/24 at 03:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

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