Forecasting and monitoring vector-borne diseases with FARSEER

#Terrascope, #Epidemiology, #PROBA-V, #Sentinel, #Copernicus

Published on 25 March 2021

Every year, more than one billion people are affected by vector-borne diseases or human illnesses caused by parasites, viruses and bacteria. But how do we track the evolution of these vector-borne diseases? And more important, how can we improve monitoring techniques to prevent new outbreaks?

Discover more about FARSEER, an online tool which uses satellite data from MODIS, VIIRS, PROBA-V and Sentinel to forecast and monitor vector-borne diseases in order to prevent the next outbreak.

The evolution of vector-borne diseases

Vector-Borne Diseases (VBD) are diseases that results from an infection transmitted to humans and other animals by “vectors” such as mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas. For example Malaria, Dengue fever or Lyme disease are some of the most common Vector-Borne diseases. 

Every year, more than one billion people are affected, of which a large proportion is due to diseases transmitted by mosquitoes. The World Health Organization, responsible to provide guidance for urgent strengthening of vector control and prevent disease outbreaks, estimates that vector-borne diseases account for more than 17% of all infectious diseases, with more than half of the world’s population at risk.

It is therefore important that we monitor and forecast these diseases in order to prevent upcoming outbreaks. FARSEER, a new online tool developed by a consortium of three European Public Institutes and three SME's (Avia-GIS, CISC, Ergo, Irideon, UPF and BPI), allows us to prevent and mitigate countless infections or possible deaths. FARSEER uses among others satellite predictors  and their derived products such as land cover maps. We use both lower  and higher spatial and temporal resolution to estimate the risk that these diseases pose.

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