Artificial Intelligence Predicted Wuhan Corona Virus Long Before WHO

Thanks to its artificial intelligence algorithms, the startup Bluedot managed to predict the 2019 coronavirus epidemic in Wuhan long before the WHO. Another proof of the role that AI can play in the health sector.

Since last week, the whole world has been on alert. A 2019-nCoV coronavirus epidemic is declared in the Chinese city of Wuhan, with a total of 2800 cases and 80 deaths across China. More than fifteen cities with a total of 57 million people have been quarantined by the Chinese government.

Outside China, there are already more than fifty confirmed cases, including three in France. Several experts now fear a global pandemic, as the transmission of the virus can occur even before the first symptoms appear.

Professor Gabriel Leung of the University of Hong Kong estimates that the number of people infected could double every six days. The only way to avoid this global catastrophe is to contain the epidemic before it is too late.

Unfortunately, it is common for Chinese authorities to take their time before sharing information with the rest of the world. In 2002 and 2003, they were notably accused of wanting to conceal the SARS epidemic which claimed the lives of 740 people.

A priori, even if doubts remain as to the accuracy of the figures communicated, the Chinese government is showing greater transparency regarding this new virus. Health organizations around the world should, therefore, be able to take precautions in time.

However, with the help of new technologies, it would have been possible to predict this epidemic much sooner. The Canadian Bluedot startup, based in Toronto, has managed to anticipate the spread of the virus through AI.

As of December 31, 2019, Bluedot alerted its customers to a possible Wuhan virus epidemic. In comparison, the WHO did not notify the public until January 9, 2020. For its part, the United States CDC gave the alert on January 6.

Founded in 2014, Bluedot is developing an AI-based health surveillance platform that analyzes billions of data in real-time. Using various machine learning and natural language processing techniques, its algorithm reviews news from around the world, reports of diseases affecting flora and fauna, airline data, and official statements to establish its predictions.

The epidemiologists of the startup are then responsible for verifying the automated results. If the latter is consistent, an alert is sent by the company to its customers in the public and private sectors to advise them to avoid risk areas.

Bluedot’s goal is to track information faster than the disease spreads. Thus, it has successfully predicted the major Asian cities where the virus would spread after Wuhan

It is interesting to note that Bluedot raised $ 10 million in August 2019. In the eyes of investors, artificial intelligence, therefore, seems to be indeed the key to fighting pandemics in an increasingly globalized system where the boundaries of time and space are disappearing of December 31, 2019, Bluedot alerted its customers to a possible Wuhan virus epidemic. In comparison, the WHO did not notify the public until January 9, 2020. For its part, the United States CDC gave the alert on January 6.

Founded in 2014, Bluedot is developing an AI-based health surveillance platform that analyzes billions of data in real-time. Using various machine learning and natural language processing techniques, its algorithm reviews news from around the world, reports of diseases affecting flora and fauna, airline data, and official statements to establish its predictions.

The epidemiologists of the startup are then responsible for verifying the automated results. If the latter is consistent, an alert is sent by the company to its customers in the public and private sectors to advise them to avoid risk areas.

Bluedot’s goal is to track information faster than the disease spreads. Thus, it has successfully predicted the major Asian cities where the virus would spread after Wuhan.

It is interesting to note that Bluedot raised $ 10 million in August 2019. In the eyes of investors, artificial intelligence, therefore, seems to be indeed the key to fighting pandemics in an increasingly globalized system where the boundaries of time and space are disappearing.

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