Posts Tagged ‘medicine’

Tech Focus: What Are Zoonoses And How Can Technology Help (Part 2 of 2)

Saturday, September 28th, 2019

How can technology help in the fight against zoonisis? Aspiring vet, Erin Tan, did some research on the topic and shares what she thinks in this second article in a two-part series.

* This article first appeared in HalenessMe.

The web-based app Supramap uses genomic data to track the global movement of avian influenza virus.

The web-based app Supramap uses genomic data to track the global movement of avian influenza virus.

Emerging technology can help in mainly two ways.

Firstly, through harnessing the power of Big Data, information from previous outbreaks, and studies conducted independently around the world, can be collated to help predict where a deadly zoonotic virus will strike next.

The vast availability of health data today means that data must be intelligently handled, using the right tools to derive helpful trends.

For instance, Google Flu Trends collated data from users’ searches to estimate influenza activity, and was found to show strong correlation with official data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the 2009 flu pandemic.

The web-based app Supramap uses genomic data to track the global movement of avian influenza virus.

Google Flu Trends collated data from users’ searches to estimate influenza activity.

Google Flu Trends collated data from users’ searches to estimate influenza activity.

(more…)

Tech Focus: What Are Zoonoses And How Can Technology Help (Part 1 of 2)

Saturday, September 21st, 2019

The word ‘zoonosis’ is not one that is popular in the common lexicon, and yet it is something that can affect our lives profoundly. Aspiring vet med student, Erin Tan, did some research on the topic and shares what she thinks in this two-part story.

* This article first appeared in HalenessMe.

Zoonoses. Source: GAO.

Zoonoses. Source: GAO.

A zoonosis is a disease which can be transferred from animals to humans, and there are many examples of zoonoses which many are familiar with.

One has only to recall the SARS outbreak of 2003 to recognise the destructive potential of zoonoses.

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), a disease which originated from viruses in bats that jumped to palm civets and then to humans, severely impacted countries like Hong Kong, China, Singapore, and even Canada.

774 lives were claimed globally by this never-before-seen disease.

Stories of doctors, nurses and other health workers who had perished saving the lives of SARS patients filled the papers.

International travel to affected areas dropped sharply by 50-70%, resulting in the closure of many tourism-related businesses.

The civet cat is closely associated with the outbreak of SARS in Asia.

The civet cat is closely associated with the outbreak of SARS in Asia.

Clearly, while the containment of SARS – especially in Singapore – is generally hailed as a success story, the outbreak did result in significant social and economic drawbacks.

(more…)

Tech Focus: Veterinary Medicine Meets TeleMedicine

Saturday, February 16th, 2019

Pet ownership is on the rise, and so is telemedicine for humans. Is telemedicine also useful for diagnosis and treatment of animals? Aspiring vet med student, Erin Tan, did some research on the topic and shares what she thinks.

Consult a vet from home via the Internet. Photo by Velizar Ivanov on Unsplash.

Consult a vet from home via the Internet. Photo by Velizar Ivanov on Unsplash.

Pet ownership is on the rise.

With canine pets licensed in Singapore increasing by 32% in the past decade – according to the Agri-Veterinary Authority of Singapore – and the booming pet industry in places like China and India, it is evident that pet owners form a large, and valuable, market.

With teleconsultation, the vet can “see to” animals needing medical consultations even when he/she is not in the clinic.

With teleconsultation, the vet can “see to” animals needing medical consultations even when he/she is not in the clinic.

The pet-care market in Asia is valued at around US$1 billion a year, and is expected to grow to US$1.5 billion by 2020.

Another trend in recent years is the rise of telemedicine in the human health industry.

There has been a proliferation of apps like MaNaDr, Doctor Anywhere and MyDoc, which aim to connect patients with doctors over a digital platform and make the provision of healthcare much more convenient.

There is much potential in marrying the two thriving industries together, by making telemedicine available for veterinarians to deliver medical advice and consultations to pet-owners, through virtual means.

Manifestations of veterinary telemedicine would include platforms for pet-owners to ask vets for advice by sending photos and messages to vets on duty, or tele-consults via video calls.

(more…)