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Soon, Early Detection of Epidemics With The Use of AI

Early detection of epidemics will be possible with better surveillance and use of artificial intelligence, said Professor Baron Peter Piot, Belgian microbiologist who co-discovered the Ebola virus during a lecture delivered on ‘100 years after the Spanish Flu: are we ready for the next epidemic’ held at the University of Hyderabad recently.

According to a press release issued by the UoH, it was the fifth lecture of the Hyderabad Lecture Series, 2019 organized with an aim to bring very eminent personalities to lecture on topics of wide interest and contemporary issues.

According to Prof Piot, zoonosis (infections transmitted to humans from animals), urbanisation, high-density population, international travel, climate change, conflict (humanitarian crisis), deforestation, population growth & increased food demand contribute to the risk of exposure to more & more emerging infections in future.

“Early detection of an epidemic is crucial in containing the epidemic, for which local capacity and rapid support system to respond to disease outbreaks is to be developed.

Measures like infection control in Hospitals, action against overuse of antibiotics and vaccine scepticism should be ensured. Research & development of vaccines should be supported,” said Prof Piot.

He further stressed on the need to have active involvement of governments across the globe, non-governmental organizations and international organizations like CEPI (Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation) in epidemic preparedness measures.
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