INDICATOR: A Cyberenvironment for Biosurveillance and Response


Infectious disease outbreaks require rapid access to information to support a coordinated response from healthcare providers and public health officials. They need to know the size, spread, and location of the outbreak, and they also need access to models that will help them to determine the best strategy to contain the outbreak. 

There are numerous software tools for outbreak detection, and there are also surveillance systems that depend on communication between health care professionals. Most of those systems use a single type of surveillance data (e.g., syndromic, mandatory reporting, or laboratory) and focus on human surveillance.

However, there are fewer options for planning responses to outbreaks. Modeling and simulation are complex and resource-intensive. For example, EpiSims and EpiCast, developed by the National Institute of Health Models of Infectious Disease Agent Study involve large, diverse datasets and require access to high-performance computing.

Cyberenvironments are an integrated set of tools and services tailored to a specific discipline that allows the community to leverage the national cyberinfrastructure in their research and teaching. They provide data stores, computational capabilities, analysis and visualization services, and interfaces to shared instruments and sensor networks.

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications is applying the concept of cyberenvironments to infectious disease surveillance to produce INDICATOR.



This paper describes INDICATOR, a biosurveillance cyberenvironment used to analyze hospital data and generate alerts for unusual values.

Primary Topic Areas: 
Original Publication Year: 
Event/Publication Date: 
December, 2008

July 30, 2018

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