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1.
JMIR Form Res ; 6(1): e33792, 2022 Jan 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1555627

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of maternal death, intensive care unit admission, and preterm birth; however, many people who are pregnant refuse to receive COVID-19 vaccination because of a lack of safety data. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this preliminary study was to assess whether Twitter data could be used to identify a cohort for epidemiologic studies of COVID-19 vaccination in pregnancy. Specifically, we examined whether it is possible to identify users who have reported (1) that they received COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy or the periconception period, and (2) their pregnancy outcomes. METHODS: We developed regular expressions to search for reports of COVID-19 vaccination in a large collection of tweets posted through the beginning of July 2021 by users who have announced their pregnancy on Twitter. To help determine if users were vaccinated during pregnancy, we drew upon a natural language processing (NLP) tool that estimates the timeframe of the prenatal period. For users who posted tweets with a timestamp indicating they were vaccinated during pregnancy, we drew upon additional NLP tools to help identify tweets that reported their pregnancy outcomes. RESULTS: We manually verified the content of tweets detected automatically, identifying 150 users who reported on Twitter that they received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy or the periconception period. We manually verified at least one reported outcome for 45 of the 60 (75%) completed pregnancies. CONCLUSIONS: Given the limited availability of data on COVID-19 vaccine safety in pregnancy, Twitter can be a complementary resource for potentially increasing the acceptance of COVID-19 vaccination in pregnant populations. The results of this preliminary study justify the development of scalable methods to identify a larger cohort for epidemiologic studies.

2.
BioData Min ; 13: 3, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1145447

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had a significant impact on population health and wellbeing. Biomedical informatics is central to COVID-19 research efforts and for the delivery of healthcare for COVID-19 patients. Critical to this effort is the participation of informaticians who typically work on other basic science or clinical problems. The goal of this editorial is to highlight some examples of COVID-19 research areas that could benefit from informatics expertise. Each research idea summarizes the COVID-19 application area, followed by an informatics methodology, approach, or technology that could make a contribution. It is our hope that this piece will motivate and make it easy for some informaticians to adopt COVID-19 research projects.

3.
J Med Internet Res ; 23(1): e25314, 2021 01 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1042713

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In the United States, the rapidly evolving COVID-19 outbreak, the shortage of available testing, and the delay of test results present challenges for actively monitoring its spread based on testing alone. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to develop, evaluate, and deploy an automatic natural language processing pipeline to collect user-generated Twitter data as a complementary resource for identifying potential cases of COVID-19 in the United States that are not based on testing and, thus, may not have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. METHODS: Beginning January 23, 2020, we collected English tweets from the Twitter Streaming application programming interface that mention keywords related to COVID-19. We applied handwritten regular expressions to identify tweets indicating that the user potentially has been exposed to COVID-19. We automatically filtered out "reported speech" (eg, quotations, news headlines) from the tweets that matched the regular expressions, and two annotators annotated a random sample of 8976 tweets that are geo-tagged or have profile location metadata, distinguishing tweets that self-report potential cases of COVID-19 from those that do not. We used the annotated tweets to train and evaluate deep neural network classifiers based on bidirectional encoder representations from transformers (BERT). Finally, we deployed the automatic pipeline on more than 85 million unlabeled tweets that were continuously collected between March 1 and August 21, 2020. RESULTS: Interannotator agreement, based on dual annotations for 3644 (41%) of the 8976 tweets, was 0.77 (Cohen κ). A deep neural network classifier, based on a BERT model that was pretrained on tweets related to COVID-19, achieved an F1-score of 0.76 (precision=0.76, recall=0.76) for detecting tweets that self-report potential cases of COVID-19. Upon deploying our automatic pipeline, we identified 13,714 tweets that self-report potential cases of COVID-19 and have US state-level geolocations. CONCLUSIONS: We have made the 13,714 tweets identified in this study, along with each tweet's time stamp and US state-level geolocation, publicly available to download. This data set presents the opportunity for future work to assess the utility of Twitter data as a complementary resource for tracking the spread of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Datasets as Topic , Natural Language Processing , Social Media/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/diagnosis , Disease Outbreaks/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Self Report , Speech , United States/epidemiology
4.
BioData Mining 2020 13:1 ; 13(1):Jan-16, 2020.
Article | WHO COVID | ID: covidwho-245243

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had a significant impact on population health and wellbeing. Biomedical informatics is central to COVID-19 research efforts and for the delivery of healthcare for COVID-19 patients. Critical to this effort is the participation of informaticians who typically work on other basic science or clinical problems. The goal of this editorial is to highlight some examples of COVID-19 research areas that could benefit from informatics expertise. Each research idea summarizes the COVID-19 application area, followed by an informatics methodology, approach, or technology that could make a contribution. It is our hope that this piece will motivate and make it easy for some informaticians to adopt COVID-19 research projects.

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