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|Title:||Interfacing a biosurveillance portal and an international network of institutional analysts to detect biological threats|
|Authors:||RICCARDO Flavia; SHIGEMATSU Mika; CHOW Catherine; LINGE Jens; DOHERTY Brian; DENTE Maria Grazia; DECLICH Silvia; BARKER Mike; BARBOZA Philippe; VAILLANT Laetitia; DONACHIE Alastair; MAWUDEKU Abla; ARTHUR Ray; MCKNIGHT Jason|
|Citation:||BIOSECURITY AND BIOTERRORISM-BIODEFENSE STRATEGY PRACTICE AND SCIENCE vol. 12 no. 6 p. 325-336|
|Publisher:||MARY ANN LIEBERT|
|Type:||Articles in periodicals and books|
|Abstract:||The Early Alerting and Reporting (EAR) project launched in 2008, is aimed at improving global early alerting and risk assessment and evaluating the feasibility and opportunity of integrating the analysis of biological, chemical, radio-nuclear (CBRN) and pandemic influenza threats. At a time when no international collaborations existed in the field of event based surveillance, EAR’s innovative approach consisted in the involvement of both epidemic intelligence experts and internet-based biosurveillance system providers in the framework of an international collaboration called the Global Health Security initiative that involved the Ministries of Health of G7 countries and Mexico, the World Health Organization and the European Commission. The EAR project pooled data from seven major internet-based biosurveillance systems onto a common portal that was progressively optimized for biological threat detection under the guidance of epidemic intelligence experts from public health institutions in Canada, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. The group became the first end users of the EAR portal, constituting a network of analysts working with a common standard operating procedure and risk assessment tools on a rotation basis to constantly screen and assess public information on the web for events that could suggest an intentional release of biological agents. Following the first two-year pilot phase, the EAR project was tested in its capacity to monitor biological threats proving that its working model was feasible and demonstrating the high commitment of the countries and international institutions involved. During the testing period, analysts using the EAR platform did not miss intentional events of biological nature and did not issue false alarms. This article provides, through the findings of this initial assessment, insights on how the field of epidemic intelligence can advance through an international network and more specifically on how it was further developed in the EAR project.|
|JRC Directorate:||Space, Security and Migration|
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