The Health Threats Unit at the Directorate General Health and Consumer Affairs of the European Commission has initiated a medical intelligence system (MediSys), a web-based news outlet providing information on public health threats worldwide. The site was created to provide European Commission (EC) healthcare providers with real time information about communicable diseases and the early detection of bioterrorism activities.
The system uses predefined keywords and combinations to collect and sort information from more than 800 web sources. The site categorizes articles in pre-defined medical topics in 25 different languages and dynamically updates statistics on all news topics every 20 minutes.
In addition, an automatic incident detection system developed with the University of Helsinki has been put in place. The tool analyzes English-language reports and extracts structured data on the number of cases, location, and date. The system delivers the information to an automatic incident database used by the EC.
The site is located at: http://medusa.jrc.it/medisys/homeedition/all/home.html.