Spatial and temporal patterns of locally-acquired dengue transmission in Northern Queensland, Australia, 1993-2012

Naish, Suchithra, Dale, Pat, Mackenzie, John S., McBride, John, Mengersen, Kerrie, and Tong, Shilu (2014) Spatial and temporal patterns of locally-acquired dengue transmission in Northern Queensland, Australia, 1993-2012. PLoS One, 9 (4). e92524. pp. 1-12.

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Abstract

Background: Dengue has been a major public health concern in Australia since it reemerged in Queensland in 1992- 1993. We explored spatio-temporal characteristics of locally-acquired dengue cases in northern tropical Queensland, Australia during the period 1993- 2012.

Methods: Locally-acquired notified cases of dengue were collected for northern tropical Queensland from 1993 to 2012. Descriptive spatial and temporal analyses were conducted using geographic information system tools and geostatistical techniques.

Results: 2,398 locally-acquired dengue cases were recorded in northern tropical Queensland during the study period. The areas affected by the dengue cases exhibited spatial and temporal variation over the study period. Notified cases of dengue occurred more frequently in autumn. Mapping of dengue by statistical local areas (census units) reveals the presence of substantial spatio- temporal variation over time and place. Statistically significant differences in dengue incidence rates among males and females (with more cases in females) (chi 2 = 15.17, d. f. = 1, p < 0.01). Differences were observed among age groups, but these were not statistically significant. There was a significant positive spatial autocorrelation of dengue incidence for the four sub- periods, with the Moran's I statistic ranging from 0.011 to 0.463 (p < 0.01). Semi- variogram analysis and smoothed maps created from interpolation techniques indicate that the pattern of spatial autocorrelation was not homogeneous across the northern Queensland.

Conclusions: Tropical areas are potential high-risk areas for mosquito- borne diseases such as dengue. This study demonstrated that the locally-acquired dengue cases have exhibited a spatial and temporal variation over the past twenty years in northern tropical Queensland, Australia. Therefore, this study provides an impetus for further investigation of clusters and risk factors in these high-risk areas.

Item ID: 33759
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1932-6203
Additional Information:

© 2014 Naish et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC)
Projects and Grants: ARC grant D110100651
Date Deposited: 18 Jun 2014 09:39
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1108 Medical Microbiology > 110804 Medical Virology @ 30%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111706 Epidemiology @ 30%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050204 Environmental Impact Assessment @ 40%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920404 Disease Distribution and Transmission (incl. Surveillance and Response) @ 30%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960303 Climate Change Models @ 40%
92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920109 Infectious Diseases @ 30%
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