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Centre for Applied Spatial Epidemiology

The Centre for Applied Spatial Epidemiology (CASE) supports health professionals to make data-informed decisions. CASE provides unique geographic analysis of health data and new opportunities for health professionals to understand and learn from local variations in disease. That means that Governments and NGOs can prioritise health care interventions where they are needed most.

Small data for big decisions

KIT Royal Tropical Institute established CASE to improve health interventions by aligning epidemiological approaches with evidence-based best practices. We work together with governments, institutes and NGOs in low-to-middle-income countries, while encouraging health managers to use available data and spatial analysis techniques to improve decision making and more effectively deliver health care to all.

CASE combines technical expertise in the fields of spatial statistics, geo-data management and impact evaluations with a broad content knowledge of various infectious and neglected tropical diseases—including Tuberculosis (TB), HIV, and Malaria, among others—to support disease control programs.

Over the last decade, we have been a leader in spatial epidemiology research as well as the development of Geographic Information System (GIS) tools and services for disease control.

Visualising the local nature of disease

Epidemiology traditionally focuses on the local conditions of a fixed geographical area where people experience disease. However, innovations in GIS and geoinformation technologies now allow us to measure and quantify the increasingly mobile and dynamic environment in which people are exposed to health risks and disease.

Above all, we aim to provide the tools to visualise the local nature, progression and spread of disease.

Good Spatial Epidemiology

The KIT Centre for Applied Spatial Epidemiology is currently developing methodological and reporting guidance for spatial epidemiological studies, for more information contact Margo van Gurp

Contact us

Do you have a question or want to know more? Contact us by sending an e-mail.

Featured projects

  • Improving access to preventive medicine: a data visualization and analysis platform to support microplanning of schistosomiasis control  

    • Institute
    • Project

    KIT and in country partners are designing a real time monitoring and evaluation platform to facilitate decision making for the control and management of schistosomiasis. This tool will build upon the MATCH methodology that seeks to inform decision making through better use of data.   In the 2021-2030 roadmap, the WHO calls for: With the limited resources available for reducing transmission and […]

  • Electronic Case based Surveillance: Using predictive modelling and real-time data to plan Active TB Case Finding in Pakistan

    • Institute
    • Project

    Pakistan has one of the highest burdens of tuberculosis (TB) in the world, a disease that infected as many as 10 million people and caused 1.4 million deaths globally in 2019. Around a quarter of the world’s population are thought to be infected with latent TB. The disease can remain dormant for years, until, for example, the immune system is […]

  • BRIDGE – Bridging Research Integrity and Global Health Epidemiology

    • Institute
    • Project

    The BRIDGE guidelines are good epidemiological practice (GEP) guidelines specifically for global health epidemiology. Why are specific GEP guidelines needed for global health? Research integrity and research fairness have gained considerable momentum in the past decade and have direct implications for global health epidemiology. Existing good epidemiological practice guidelines developed by national epidemiological associations lack […]

  • Tuberculosis Hackathon

    • Institute
    • Project

    The Tuberculosis Hackathon begins with a question: can we make useful predictive models for sub-national tuberculosis (TB) burden in Pakistan? In partnership with Pakistan’s National Tuberculosis Control Program, KIT’s Centre for Spatial Epidemiology (CASE) is hosting a virtual hackathon to develop novel approaches to predict TB burden. The challenge TB prevalence surveys are usually powered […]

  • Understanding Why Tuberculosis Cases are Missed in Bangladesh

    • Institute
    • Project

    In August 2017, a data analysis workshop was organised in Dhaka, Bangladesh, during which stakeholders from various Bangladeshi institutions – including BRAC, MSH and ICDDR Bangladesh – worked together to generate new hypotheses about where missing cases of TB are found, whom they may be, why they may be missed, and which solutions are needed […]

  • Improving Urban Access to Tuberculosis Services in Pakistan

    • Institute
    • Project

    KIT’s Centre for Applied Spatial Epidemiology (CASE) supported Pakistan’s National TB Programme in the collection of data on TB diagnostic and treatment centers in Khairpur and Islamabad Capital Territory. Summary A number of countries that attended the Bangkok workshop on the KIT’s MATCH Approach to tuberculosis (TB) care subsequently requested continued support to either a) […]

  • Addressing Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis in Kazakhstan

    • Institute
    • Project

    Kazakhstan is one of thirty countries prioritised by the WHO because of its high-burden of multi drug-resistant (MDR)-Tuberculosis (TB). Summary The Centre for Applied Spatial Epidemiology (CASE) of KIT Royal Tropical Institute was requested by The Global Fund to apply the MATCH Approach to tuberculosis care to support National Toxicology Programs in the Central Asian […]

  • Bangkok Workshop on the MATCH Approach to Tuberculosis Care in South & South-East Asia

    • Institute
    • Project

    The Centre for Applied Spatial Epidemiology (CASE) of KIT Royal Tropical Institute provided training in the MATCH Approach to tuberculosis (TB) programme staff who use data to improve programme effectiveness. Funded by the Global Fund, The Stop TB Partnership and the WHO Global TB Program, the CASE team traveled to Bangkok to facilitate the “Regional […]

  • The KIT MATCH Approach for Enhancing TB Care Coverage

    • Institute
    • Project

    KIT Royal Tropical Institute proudly presents: the MATCH approach (Mapping and Analysis for Tailored disease Control and Health system strengthening) for National Tuberculosis Programmes. MATCH supports National Tuberculosis Programmes to more effectively use resources to treat populations with ongoing tuberculosis transmission. The MATCH approach begins by gathering many – often underused – sources of data, for example: geographic, temporal, and demographic data. The […]

  • Fighting Leptospirosis: a Neglected Global Disease

    • Institute
    • Project

    GLEAN is a multisector, multidisciplinary consortium devoted to the fight against leptospirosis. KIT Royal Tropical Institute is involved as a major contributor, supporting the detection and control of this infectious disease that affects over 1 million people a year globally. A global burden Leptospirosis is an endemic and epidemic zoonotic disease with global distribution, which is particularly […]

  • Lyme Disease in Europe: Perspectives for Surveillance

    • Institute
    • Project

    This project aims to increase our understanding of the epidemiology, risks and impact of Lyme borreliosis in Europe. Identifying spatial and temporal patterns in the incidence of infections will allow us to make recommendations of improved (risk-based) surveillance, and will increase of public and institutional awareness of Lyme risks in those area where Borrelia is most […]

  • Environmental Modelling for the Mitigation of Health Risks

    • Institute
    • Project

    The Earth Observation and ENVironmental modelling for the mitigation of HEAlth risks (EO2HEAVEN) project monitored environmental changes induced by human activities and enhanced integration of remotely sensed and in-situ environmental measurements with public health data. New insights were used to develop models relating environmental data to public health threats and to predict health risks. Healthy […]

Related

  • How COVID-19 Spreads Among Us

    • Institute
    • Blog
    • News

    By Ente Rood, KIT Epidemiologist Geographic analysis of COVID-19 surveillance data can help us better understand how the virus spreads and design more effective mitigation measures for future waves of the pandemic. As COVID-19 spreads around the world, politicians and public health authorities are confronted with a devilish dilemma as they try to balance the […]

    Published on:
  • Now more than ever, African governments need reliable data

    • Institute
    • Blog
    • News

    By Sandra Alba, Christina Mergenthaler & Roland Kielman At the end of March 2020, in an interview with the BBC, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the former president of Liberia, spoke about the 2014-16 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, which killed almost 5,000 Liberians. “Fear drove people to run, to hide, to hoard to protect their own,” […]

    Published on:

The MATCH Approach

A cornerstone of the Centre for Applied Spatial Epidemiology is the MATCH Approach. This innovative geo-spatial analysis framework evaluates the effectiveness of interventions in the context of the local disease risk, burden and health efforts. This information is especially valuable in informing local interventions.

The power of the MATCH approach is twofold. First, it employs and analyses multiple — and often underused — sources of geographically, temporally and demographically disaggregated data on epidemiological risk factors.  And finally, it links data to policy objectives, combines and simplifies complex data into a more intuitive format and builds capacity for data management and analysis. This enables decision makers to use their program data to make better informed decisions supported by local evidence.

MATCH is currently being applied to support TB programs around the world to identify persistent gaps in program functioning which lead to over four million people with TB not being diagnosed or reported globally. MATCH consequently provides a valuable tool to identify geographic areas where TB case detection, diagnosis and reporting can be strengthened.

Training & Education

Using innovative geo-spatial tools opens new perspectives on how we consider the effect of geographic contexts on health, and especially disease.
Continuous knowledge transfer as well as capacity building amongst data managers, analysts and M&E experts is required to ensure that these innovations are accessible and become embedded in routine analyses and presentation, 

Simultaneously, outputs of the application of analytical tools need to be critically appraised and interpreted within local context to provide value for planning. As part of our projects and programme support, we also train local counterparts and work closely with stakeholders. As a result, we build capacity and create ownership of the process and outcomes which will inform health planning, beyond the support provided by KIT.

KIT also houses an education centre with Masters’ programmes and advanced courses for health professionals — all aimed at strengthening health systems around the world. The courses are offered in cooperation with the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

Data disclosure & processing

Much of the effort required to generate maps and apply spatial analysis to routinely collected programme data relies on the availability and accessibility of health data. Recently, many health programmes have adopted electronic data systems, such as the DHIS2, to collect, store an manage project data. This data is generally accessible via customizable interfaces which allow users to perform basic analysis for monitoring purposes.

To leverage these applications and fully disclose the data contained within these resources, CASE developed a GIS plugin which makes data stored and managed using DHIS2 fully interoperable with Quantum GIS, therefore enabling the integration of data across various geographic units and scales.

Other resources

Publications

Epidemiology topics

KIT MAG

KIT MAG: an annual magazine packed with stories about our activities, at our campus in Amsterdam and with partners worldwide.

Browse the magazine online or take a copy with you when you visit KIT (at the reception).