Use Case 10: Historical archive of disease outbreaks

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Requirements

Use case summary

Description

Value

  • Value to industry/public: A historical archive of information related to outbreaks of communicable diseases would be a rich data source for those tracking outbreaks of whooping cough, syphilis, West Nile, or other communicable diseases.

Customer

  • Propublica

Current data and limitation

Solution

Short term workaround

  • Project Tycho from the University of Pittsburgh has digitized data on notifiable disease from the weekly MMWR back through 1888 and has made it available publicly
    • https://www.tycho.pitt.edu/
    • The data is freely available, but account registration is required
    • Full methodology available in this article http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4175560/?report=classic, but in summary:
      • Digitized all data available in tabular format that listed etiologically defined cases or deaths by week for locations in the US
      • Extracted and sanitized all data of reported counts (weekly tallies) of cases or deaths and the reporting locations, periods, and diseases