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The Forum > Article Comments > Coronavirus the next pandemic? > Comments

Coronavirus the next pandemic? : Comments

By Peter Curson, published 15/5/2013

Currently we are witnessing the emergence of a new SARS-like coronavirus which seems to have been spreading throughout some Middle East Countries over the last year.

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In "Coronavirus the next pandemic?" (Online Opinion, 15 May 2013) Peter Curson points out that national boundaries offer no defense from new diseases: http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=15009

One answer is better tracking of the disease near the source. A few weeks ago I was in Colombo and was asked by local ICT professionals to talk about how computers could be used to combat a pandemic: http://blog.tomw.net.au/2013/05/mobiles-and-e-learning-for-pandemic-flu.html

Doctors researching infection came along and we work-shopped what could be done. One idea was to use mobile phones to allow doctors to quickly report cases, which could then be mapped in near real time. Currently, in most countries, cases of reportable diseases are communicated on paper, which could days, or weeks, to get from an outlying clinic to the national department of health, by which time the disease could have spread widely.

Members of the Sahana Software Foundation, who work on free open source humanitarian software, are now looking at how to produce such a tool: http://sahanafoundation.org/
Posted by tomw, Monday, 20 May 2013 9:15:28 AM
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