Tag Archives: infectious disease

ID Modeling Summer School

I’ve been spending the week at the Infectious Disease Modeling Summer School here at UW. It’s very interesting, and good for me to learn more about how people in my new field think (especially people in my new field, outside of my little institute…)

I’ve discovered a pet peeve during this week of presentations, though. I’ve seen a lot of numerical examples where the numbers work out perfectly… a little too perfectly. If you split 1000 people into an experimental and control group by choosing a random subset of 500, fine. But if you look within that group to see how many have a trait that occurs independently with probability 0.2, you do not often find exactly 100 in group A and 100 in group B. I think a little more complexity in the numbers makes the example easier to understand.

I’m sure that you, my loyal reader, can generate random numbers from a multitude of distributions, if you wanted to spend the time. But if you’re busy, busy, busy, then you can have wolfram alpha do all the work. It actually comes through for that one: “sample Binomial(500, .2)“.

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Filed under education, global health

Numbers from World TB Day + Maps of Malaria

Twice as many people were diagnosed with both HIV and tuberculosis in 2007 than were in 2006. (Science Mag, BMJ)

Quote about global health data in the article that is quite consistent with what I’ve seen comes from Richard Chaisson:

“They’re working with the best stuff they have, and the best stuff they have is not good.”

PLoS Med today has an article with some beautiful maps, co-authored by PyMC super-hacker Anand Patil. A World Malaria Map: Plasmodium falciparum Endemicity in 2007.

And, to make it a triple-crown news day for infectious disease, the Pope claims that condoms exacerbate HIV and AIDS problem. (I guess this was the big news a week ago, but it just crossed my desk today.)


Filed under global health