[gov3009-l] Bioterror Localization/Detection: Wed@noon, Appld Stats Wkshop

adiamond@fas.harvard.edu adiamond@fas.harvard.edu
Mon, 19 Apr 2004 09:45:48 -0400

Research Workshop in Applied Statistics 
Join us this Wednesday (April 21) at noon, 
at CBRSS, the Center for Basic Research in the Social Sciences, 
34 Kirkland Street, Room 22, for 

"BACTrack:  A System for Rapid Detection and Spatio-Temporal Localization of 
Biological Agent Attacks"

Our speaker will be Ronald Hoffeld of MIT's Lincoln Laboratories.

Syndromic surveillance systems can generally be improved by inclusion of 
patient location information. This information is difficult to obtain from 
health care providers due to HIPAA privacy restrictions. Recent trends in 
location-based cell phone services indicate that the location histories of 
phone subscribers may become available on a voluntary basis. Coupling these 
data with individuals self-reported coarse health status (i.e. sick or 
healthy) suggests a new health surveillance technique. This technique, 
which we call BACTrack for Biological Agent Correlation Tracker, searches 
for spatial temporal regions in which a larger than expected percentage of 
the population became infected. The unique aspect of this search is that it 
uses current health status information with past location history data.

This talk will give the results of a study we conducted to determine the 
operating characteristics of this detection technique. Included will be a 
description of the system concept, implementation approaches, detection 
algorithms, and estimates of performance.

As always, lunch will be provided. 

Contact information, the current schedule, and previous presentations may be 
found at the course web site: http://www.courses.fas.harvard.edu/~gov3009/ 


The Research Workshop in Applied Statistics is a forum for graduate 
students, faculty, and visiting scholars to present and discuss work 
in progress and exchange ideas.  It is intended as a tour of Harvard's 
statistical innovations and applications with weekly stops in 
different disciplines such as economics, epidemiology, medicine, 
political science, psychology, public policy, public health, sociology 
and statistics.  The topics of papers presented in previous years 
included missing data, survey analysis, Bayesian simulation, sample 
selection, and models for election and portfolio choice. Faculty and 
student participants in the workshop present their current projects, 
and guest speakers also give occasional presentations. The workshop 
provides an excellent opportunity for informal interaction between 
graduate students and faculty from a variety of disciplines. Course 
credit is available for students as either an upper-level Government 
or Sociology class. Lunch is provided. 

If you are interested, note that all events are held at noon, in Room 22, 
Center for Basic Research in Social Sciences (CBRSS, 34 Kirkland St., this is 
the yellow building across the street from William James Hall). 
Contact information and previous presentations may be found at the course web 
site: http://www.courses.fas.harvard.edu/~gov3009/ 

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