MEDMI – Connecting health and environment data

The Medical & Environmental Data Mash-up Infrastructure project is aiming to connect diverse databases to improve our understanding of the links between climate, environment, and human health.

View the project’s full site at www.data-mashup.org.uk

To support rapid, novel, and rigorous research in these areas, MEDMI will link and analyse complex meteorological, environmental and epidemiological data, through the use of the emerging data “mash-up” field of computational science.

Existing databases stored in various locations and organisations will be combined in a consistent temporal and spatial framework, creating an internet based platform that will enable data on a host of variables to be mapped and interrogated.

The 3 year project represents a working partnership between the University of Exeter, the Met Office, Public Health England, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and University of Bristol

As the research progresses, several planned studies will assess the validity of the new data set, initially focusing on potential links between:

  • Extreme temperatures, air quality, and mortality
  • Climate, weather, and infectious diseases
  • Climate, coastal & ocean dynamics, and harmful algal blooms

Ultimately the team will work towards making the new data set available to research teams across the world, helping to expand upon the existing scope of the project and develop new applications and products.

A large proportion of diseases worldwide are associated with environmental factors, and climate change forecasts are placing increasing emphasis on the ways in which our weather, combined with the environment, can impact upon health and wellbeing.

Creating a unique data and analysis platform is a vital step to advance epidemiologic, clinical, and commercial collaborative applications in the field, which will lead ultimately to improved health outcomes.

Funded by the Medical Research Council and Natural Environment Research Council MEDMI is running from September 2013 to May 2016. More information will be available as the project progresses, please direct any questions to Project Manager Nicky Cocksedge.

Image courtesy of infocux technologies