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With smart medical urban and rural facilities (SMURFs) we can identify conventional and non-conventional causes of diseases, spatial trends and predict where the next outbreak of disease is likely to happen. The usual health facilities can be upgraded to SMURFs with the provision of infrastructure like computer, database software and internet for recording and sending geocoded data.
SMURFs send geocoded patients and disease data to CeDAHs where experts can analyze this data by combining it with georeferenced satellite images. This will enable them to identify relationship with variables (as a function of location/geocoordinates) like:
-time of the year for certain disease to occur
-geospatial variables like surrounding water quality, vegetation health etc
-demographics like poverty levels, population density etc
Identification of relationship (or no relationshipof disease with geospatial factors) will help us build geospatial models to predict where next disease outbreak is likely to happen. This will help better plan and prioritize health service delivery.
Also, SMURFs essentially identify where health facilities exist. Combining demographic maps with health facility locations can indicate inadequacy of health service per population index and help identify neglected areas and hard to reach areas for health outreach services.
The next step can be using artificial intelligence for satellite images to identify pockets of population in remote/ unaccessible areas and cater for health outreach (like polio vaccination) and establishing SMURFs there.
SpaceApps is a NASA incubator innovation program.