Tweeting Fever: Are Tweet Extracts a Valid Surrogate Data Source for Dengue Fever?

Jacqueline S. Coberly, Clayton R. Fink, Eugene Elbert, In-Kyu Yoon, John M. Velasco, Agnes Tomayo, V. Roque, S. Ygano, Durinda Macasoco, Sheri Lewis


This abstract describes a study that examined whether Twitter data extracts could be used effectively as a surrogate data source for dengue fever for electronic disease surveillance. Tweets containing a medically-relevant reference to fever were compared to fever and dengue fever incidence data as identified by local and national health authorities and found to be statistically significantly correlated with both incidence data sets. The results suggest that Twitter extracts may provide a valid and timely surrogate data source to monitor dengue fever. Further study is warranted.

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Online Journal of Public Health Informatics * ISSN 1947-2579 *