Twitter Could Help Predict Asthma-Related ED Patient Volume

According to researchers writing in the Journal of Biomedical and Health Informatics, hospitals, medical personnel, and public health professionals may be able to use Twitter to predict the volume of asthma-related emergency department visits. The authors write that “current national asthma disease surveillance systems can have data availability lags of up to two weeks. Rapid progress has been made in gathering non-traditional, digital information to perform disease surveillance. We introduce a novel method of using multiple data sources for predicting the number of asthma related emergency department visits in a specific area. Twitter data, Google search interests and environmental sensor data were collected for this purpose. Our preliminary findings show that our model can predict the number of asthma ED visits based on near-real-time environmental and social media data with approximately 70% precision. The results can be helpful for public health surveillance, emergency department preparedness, and, targeted patient interventions.” Click here to read the full article.