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A lack of surveillance system infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region is seen as hindering the global control of rapidly spreading infectious diseases such as the recent avian H5N1 epidemic. As part of improving surveillance in the region, the BioCaster project aims to develop a system based on text mining for automatically monitoring Internet news and(More)
SUMMARY BioCaster is an ontology-based text mining system for detecting and tracking the distribution of infectious disease outbreaks from linguistic signals on the Web. The system continuously analyzes documents reported from over 1700 RSS feeds, classifies them for topical relevance and plots them onto a Google map using geocoded information. The(More)
BACKGROUND This paper describes the design of an event ontology being developed for application in the machine understanding of infectious disease-related events reported in natural language text. This event ontology is designed to support timely detection of disease outbreaks and rapid judgment of their alerting status by 1) bridging a gap between layman's(More)
Amid growing public concern about the spread of infectious diseases such as avian influenza and SARS, there is an increasing need for collecting timely and reliable information about disease outbreaks from natural language data such as online news articles. In this paper we introduce BioCaster, a text mining-based system for infectious disease detection and(More)
BACKGROUND The method for estimating incidence of infectious diseases from sentinel surveillance data has been proposed. In Japan, although the annual incidence rates of influenza and pediatric diseases estimated using the method were reported, their weekly incidence rates have not. METHODS The weekly sex- and age-specific numbers of cases in the sentinel(More)
In this paper, we will report annotation experiments which show the advantage of applying a formal ontological methodology for constructing a schema for semantic annotation to mark up terms in the public health domain. We demonstrate that (1) a traditional task-oriented approach with a simple schema can cause several critical problems, and (2) the(More)
The use of three-dimensional virtual environments in training applications supports the simulation of complex scenarios and realistic object behaviour. While these environments have the potential to provide an advanced training experience to students, it is difficult to design and manage a training session in real time due to the number of parameters to pay(More)
Hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFMD) has threatened East Asia for more than three decades and has become an important public health issue owing to its severe sequelae and mortality among children. The lack of effective treatment and vaccine for HFMD highlights the urgent need for efficiently integrated early warning surveillance systems in the region. In(More)
BACKGROUND The sentinel surveillance system in Japan provides estimates of nationwide influenza incidence. Although prefectural influenza incidences can be estimated using data from the current surveillance system, such estimates may be imprecise. METHODS We calculated the numbers of sentinel medical institutions (SMIs) needed in the surveillance system(More)