Information systems are central to the efficiency and effectiveness of organizations, at their best leveraging established and emerging technologies and expert human resources to manage and coordinate the flow of information among program components. We will establish a Data Core as the information system for this Program project to coordinate activities among the projects and cores and across institutions and countries, extending and consolidating data support operations that have been developed over the previous 12 years of dengue-related research based on longitudinal cohorts in Iquitos, Peru. In establishing the Data Core we expressly recognize the non-trivial burden of acquiring, processing, and distributing information in a way that is timely and reliable. The Data Core is central to the synergy of the program, acquiring data from the Surveillance Core and Projects 1 and 2, processing the data, and then making the data and information available for operational, reporting, and analytical purposes (e.g., in Project 3). The Data Core will also directly support the aims of Project 3 through the maintenance and consolidation of historical data gathered by past dengue projects in Iquitos and the management of our Geographic Information System. The Data Core will be composed of experienced, expert personnel and a custom-built data management system utilizing the latest developments in emerging technologies, including open-source software tools and cellular-phones. While the Core will rely on existing information system infrastructure initially, to meet the program projects objectives we will develop innovative software systems for data access and processing and cellular-phone based mechanisms for data capture, operational support, and disease surveillance. Primary Core activities will be based in Iquitos and at the Center for Vectorborne Diseases (CVEC) at UC Davis, with additional processing activities at Emory University. In addition to the primary responsibility of data support to the program project, the Data Core will work to establish a data 'bridge'to the ministry of health in Iquitos, facilitating the timely reporting of data from our projects to them while also providing secure, reliable mechanisms for them to acquire and manage dengue related health and vector control data This bridge will encompass technical solutions and student and health worker training. The Data Core will also oversee the distrilDution and sharing of data and information gathered by this Program Project with the community at large via easily accessible web-interfaces.
(See Instructions): Addressing pressing public health problems, such as the importance of heterogeneity in the transmission of dengue virus, requires ambitious research and surveillance programs coordinating the efforts and contributions of individuals and institutions across disciplines and country borders. Robust, well-designed, and economical information systems built on established and emerging technologies are the means for effective and efficient management of such programs.
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