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Vaccine X ; 7: 100084, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1386131

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Infectious diseases continue to cause significant impact on human health. Vaccines are instrumental in preventing infectious diseases and mitigating pandemics and epidemics. SARS-CoV-2 is the most recent example of an urgent pandemic that requires the development of vaccines. This study combined real-world data and geospatial visualization techniques to demonstrate methods to monitor and communicate the uptake and impact of existing and new vaccines. METHODS: Observational data of existing pediatric rotavirus vaccines were used as an example. A large US national insurance claims database was accessed to build an analytic dataset for a 20-year period (1996-2017). For each week and multiple geographic scales, animated spatial and non-spatial visualization techniques were applied to demonstrate changes in seasonal rotavirus epidemic curves and population-based disease rates before, during, and after vaccine introduction in 2006. The geographic scales included national, state, county and zip code tabulation areas. An online web-based digital atlas was built to display either continuous or snapshot visualizations of disease patterns, vaccine uptake, and improved health outcomes after vaccination (http://www.mapvaccines.com). RESULTS: Over 17 million zip code-weeks of data were available for analysis. The animations show geospatial patterns of rotavirus-related medical encounter rates peaking every year from November - February prior to vaccine availability in 2006. Visualizations showed increasing vaccination coverage rates at all geographic scales over time. Declines in medical encounter rates accelerated as vaccination coverage rapidly increased after 2010. The data maps also identified geographic hotspots with low vaccination rates and persistent disease rates. CONCLUSION: This project developed novel web-based methods to communicate location and time-based vaccine uptake and the related reduction in medical visits due to viral infection. Future applications of the visualization could be used by health agencies to monitor known or novel disease patterns over time in conjunction with close assessment of current and future vaccine utilization.

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