Friday, September 14, 2012

Mappy Health Train Express


What word rhymes with happy? Why Mappy of course ! What social media platform gives instantaneous information,in real time as to outbreaks of infectious diseases? Mappy can track the outbreak of mosquito borne diseases, influenza outbreaks, and a multitude of other potentially harmful infectious diseases.

Mappy was the result of a ‘Challenge” by HHS for development of innovative health software. 

HHS describes it’s new application, developed by: Social Health Insights.  Early on it is tracking the outbreak of West Nile Virus

“We are Tracking Disease Trends, 140 characters at a Time !”


Twitter challenge sparks innovation in tracking local health trends
New web-based app leverages Twitter for real-time early warning of disease outbreaks.

Local public health officials can use a free new Web-based application, MappyHealth This link takes you to a non-Federal Government site, to track health concerns in real time in their communities using Twitter, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) announced today.

MappyHealth is the winning submission of 33 applicants in a developers’ challenge, “Now Trending: #Health in My Community,” sponsored by ASPR. Health officials can use data they gain through the app to complement other health surveillance systems in identifying emerging health issues and as an early warning of possible public health emergencies in a community.

The challenge grew from a request made by local health officials to ASPR for help in developing a Web-based tool that could make social media monitoring more accessible to local health departments. Studies of the 2009 H1N1 pandemic and the Haiti cholera outbreak demonstrated that social media trends can indicate disease outbreaks earlier than conventional surveillance methods. However, many Web-based apps look back after a disease outbreak, rather than attempting to identify health trends as they emerge in real time.

This more than clever and highly usable application (web based) allows for selection of criteria by selecting criteria on the top banner, such a condition, location, and twitter trend.  A visually captivating feature is the ‘running ticker tape” display of trends in episodes such as tick-borne diseases, typhoid, tuberculosis, varicella with indications as to increases or decreases in the last 4-24 hours depending upon the magnitude of each criteria.

Social Media here performs well for quick display of important information translated from tabular chart data sets into friendly, usable and easily identifiable data sets in a graphic user interface.

Kudos to Social Health Insights, LLC



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