The main goal of the Computer Assisted Search for Epidemics (CASE) project is to develop a reliable system that generates warnings when the number of reported cases of a particular infectious disease reaches a level that indicates an unusual or unexpected rate. The system is currently in use at the Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control (SMI). It performs daily surveillance using data obtained from the database to which all notifiable diseases are reported in Sweden.
The CASE application can be administrated from a simple GUI. It is designed to collect disease data from a Microsoft SQL 2005 server and to then store it in a MySQL database. When an aberration has been detected by the system, an e-mail is automatically sent to the addresses in a predefined list (one per disease). Different statistical algorithms can be applied to the data to detect possible outbreaks. Algorithms that are included in the current version of CASE are SatScan Poisson model, SatScan Space-time permutation model, the algorithm developed by Farrington et al., OutbreakP, and a simple threshold function. Other algorithms can easily be added, although that will require some programming. Scripts for creating the structure of the databases can be downloaded below.
The developers at SMI are interested in comments and also in improvements made to the code. Please let us know by sending an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org