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Local polynomial estimation of Poisson intensities in the presence of reporting delays

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The system for monitoring suicides in Hong Kong has considerable delays in reporting as the cause of death needs to be determined by a coroner's investigation. However, timely estimates of suicide rates are desirable to assist in the formulation of public health policies. This motivated us to develop a non-parametric procedure to estimate the intensity function of a Poisson process in the presence of reporting delays. We give closed form estimators of the Poisson intensity and the delay distribution, conduct simulation studies to evaluate the method proposed and derive their asymptotic properties. The method proposed is applied to estimate the intensity of suicide in Hong Kong.

Keywords: Counting process; Martingale; Non-parametric procedure; Partial observation; Suicide cases

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: University of Hong Kong, People's Republic of China 2: University of Melbourne, Australia

Publication date: September 1, 2008


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