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The Development of the Chagas’ Online Data Entry System (CODES-GIS)

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Abstract

This article describes a web-based data entry and GIS-driven mapping system designed for an ethnographic and entomological survey of Chagas’ disease, an emerging zoonotic disease, and Triatoma dimidiata, a primary vector, in the Los Tuxtlas region of Veracruz, Mexico. To better understand this disease in the region, a collaborative, multi-disciplinary study was initiated to conduct a spatial investigation of T. dimidiata and a community-by-community survey of local perceptions of the disease. In order to facilitate such a collaborative effort the CODES-GIS was developed. This system allows for (near) real-time mapping, analyses, disease reporting, and results sharing. CODES-GIS provides a framework for a research team working in a remote area with limited technology, software, or GIS expertise to benefit from (near) real-time spatial analyses performed at collaborating institutions. The system is bi-directional, where field personnel can upload data to the system for field-based map production. Likewise, laboratory personnel can upload diagnostics data for viewing by field personnel. In this way, the system provides a virtual link between the field and the laboratory to increase the speed at which results are returned to the local community. The CODES-GIS is described along with a selection of study results.
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Keywords: Chagas’ disease; Internet mapping; infectious disease surveillance; real-time GIS; spatial analysis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Geography California State University, Fullerton 2: Department of Geography University of Southern California 3: CADGIS Research Laboratory Louisianna State University 4: Department of Biological Sciences Loyola University New Orleans 5: Estación de Biologia Los Tuxtlas Instituto de Biologia Univerisadad Nacional Autónoma de México

Publication date: April 1, 2008

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