ICMR Recommends RS-GIS to control Vector Borne Disease

Remote sensing and geographical information system are expected to be an effective preventive measure against the emerging and re-emerging vector-borne diseases that pose great challenge to the researchers, disease control program planners and implementors.
The recent studies by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) task force to study the applications of the Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographical Information System (GIS) on the vector-borne disease prevention, has led to the conclusion that these technologies can be very effective in controlling the vector-borne diseases prevalent in our country. The major vector- borne diseases in India include malaria, filariasis, dengue, Japanese encephalitis (JE) and Visceral leishmaniasis, claiming millions of lives each year.
Recognizing the high potential of GIS and RS technologies in vector-borne diseases, the advances in RS with the availability of IRS-1C and 1D satellites that have a better resolution, and the developments in GIS technology, the Epidemiology and Communication Diseases Division of the ICMR for the first time initiated task force projects in vector-borne diseases using GIS and RS application tools. The projects were initiated in malaria, filariasis and visceral leishmaniasis.
The six member task force headed by Dr S Pattanayak recommended the use of GIS and RS are tools that can be used to provide solutions in vector-borne disease control programs. The studies highlighted the application of RS and GIS for the management of vector-borne disease by predicting the high-risk areas and the vulnerable periods of disease outbreaks.
Dr VM Katoch, Director General, ICMR, said, “The information will stimulate the professionals and academia to take up more studies in this area. The RS and GIS technology applications can be used to develop public healthcare strategies for all emerging and reemerging vector-borne diseases.”
GIS is an information technology tool comprising computer hardware and software to input, store, update, retrieve, analyze and output geo-referenced data. It has the potential to develop thematic maps of the input data and overlaying and integration of maps, and has a strong statistical component to visualize, interpret complex real world situations to provide effective solutions.

Yogesh Agrawal  &  Sanjoy Gupta
Editor in Chief
Biotech Trove’s Blog

Courtesy  :-  http://www.biospectrumasia.com/

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