Friday, August 22, 2014

Viral Maps

Three of the leading public health agencies in the Americas  provide data and/ or map the Chikungunya epidemic sweeping across the Caribbean and the continental Americas. The Centres for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) says that 'chikungunya case counts are publicly released every Wednesday', though these could not be found on its website, and provides a static presence/ absence map showing countries where local transmission has been documented.

The Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) provides a weekly report every Friday (usually late in the afternoon) of Chikungunya counts for most countries of the Americas (including the Caribbean) and a static presence/ absence map showing countries with both local and imported cases (travellers to the country). The PAHO map also highlights 'sub-national areas' with local transmission of the virus, e.g. the Divisions of Guarico, Carabobo, Aragua, Vargas and Miranda in Venezuela and the State of Florida in the USA. However it is not known whether the map is intended to communicate that these areas are Chikungunya hotspots within a country.

The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) provides a weekly report like PAHO, of Chikungunya counts for the 20 CARICOM countries and 11 others, but every Monday, and an interactive map. The CARPHA map has a useful timeline feature illustrating the progression of the disease through the Region and mouseover info boxes showing the number of cases in a country. Both PAHO and CARPHA seems to face issues with old data from at least some countries,

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