Finally: government surveillance that we can be thankful for!
December 17, 2007 8:46 PM   Subscribe

Curious about what creepy crawlies your kids might be bringing home? Follow the real-time trends for all of the best respiratory and enteric (GI) viruses!

Amaze your friends and family with your ability to predict outbreaks of all of the childhood favorites, such as RSV (respiratory syncitial virus - a common cause of bronchiolitis and pneumonia in very young children [more here]), rotavirus (a common cause of protracted vomiting and explosive diarrhea in children under 5), and of course, adenovirus, which (at least the Ad 14 strain) is getting plenty of press this year as the "evil Killer Cold". National, regional and state-by-state surveillance data with 3-week running averages. It's the one government surveillance program that four out of five physicians recommend for their patients who have small children.

Apologies for the light-hearted attitude to those who are suffering from god-awful rotavirus-induced diarrhea, a horrible RSV-induced cold, or some other nasty virus this season
posted by scblackman (11 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
So cool. Perfect accompaniment to my Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
posted by The White Hat at 9:14 PM on December 17, 2007

This seems to be a good tie-in to the "How many 5-year olds could you take in a fight" link, earlier this evening.
posted by darkstar at 9:18 PM on December 17, 2007

next up: mapping these data to create state forecasts?

with radio buttons and scroll-y bars for gender, race, age, and income?
posted by eustatic at 9:23 PM on December 17, 2007

posted by eustatic at 9:25 PM on December 17, 2007

Gah!! Germs!!! Quick: kill all the children!
posted by pompomtom at 9:35 PM on December 17, 2007

cool. maybe we can get the headlice and scabies to play along.

parasite kickball!
posted by CitizenD at 9:42 PM on December 17, 2007

Here are some statistics of RSV and influenza deaths from a study from 1976 to 1988. RSV is the leading viral cause of death for children under 5 (not the flu, not pneumonia). If they don't die, there is often lung damage leading to asthma. The mean death rate from influenza was 37 thousand a year.

Considering how many of these diseases are not the flu, it makes me wonder just why the heck we are putting all this attention on the flu. while all the others seem to be under the radar of all the health agencies (or maybe they just have no clue on how to deal with them). The next epidemic may be another virus for which we are completely unprepared even though it may have been circulating in one form or another for decades.
posted by eye of newt at 11:14 PM on December 17, 2007

Sigh. My dear daughter's had 3 viruses in the last month, what could the charts have done to save us all?
posted by DenOfSizer at 4:04 AM on December 18, 2007

Ah yes, RSV season is upon us. The cancellation rate in our OR always spikes at this time of year because of RSV infection; both because elective surgery is contraindicated in someone with an active infection and because the hospital can run short of beds because they are all full of RSV patients.
posted by TedW at 7:22 AM on December 18, 2007

Question: on the real-time trends, the y-axis is labeled "percent positive." Percent of what? All people? All sick people tested? In Feb 2007, 40 percent of what tested postive for Rotavirus antigen?
posted by 3.2.3 at 8:36 AM on December 18, 2007

It's percent of tests sent that came back positive.
posted by scblackman at 9:20 AM on December 18, 2007

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