Rift Valley Fever: improving predictive models for disease forecasting
Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is an arthropod-borne disease endemic to much of Sub-Saharan Africa and the Arabian Peninsula causing abortion storms and high neonatal mortality in sheep, goats, and cattle and influenza-like to hemorrhagic illness in humans. RVF is transmitted by over 30 species of arthropods and can persist in the soil for decades in the trans-ovarially infected, desiccation resistant eggs of Aedine species of mosquitoes. Recent increases in the severity and frequency of RVF outbreaks within East Africa in addition to concern for the potential for RVF spread to new areas has prompted interest by several public health authorities in improving disease forecasting tools. This report describes factors of RVF ecology and epidemiology important to current disease forecasting efforts and gives recommendations for the spatial and temporal refinement of extant modelling efforts.
Senior seminar paperSeminar SF610.1 2009 B88