Mapping H1N1

We have all heard about the outbreak of swine flu across the globe and how it has affected a great number of people as nearly 14,000 cases have been reported so far (WHO, 2009). If you are like me, then you likely have no clue where the Swine Flu has been popping up most frequently

There have been many reports coming from Mexico, the U.S. and other countries around the world, but to be honest, it is very difficult to keep up with all of the reports, and to know exactly what the outbreak looks like. Naturally, I was curious to find out if anyone had been creating maps of where the Swine Flu is most prevalent, and not to my surprise, the World Health Organization (WHO) is keeping updated maps that feature the number of outbreaks and deaths that have been confirmed in each country. Surprisingly (to me at least), the United States has had the highest number of confirmed cases of the Swine Flue at 6,764, I did not know that, did you? This is a good example of how mapping can be used to benefit our knowledge about nearly any topic. Epidemiologists often use mapping to track various factors related to the outbreak of diseases. Being an aspiring Criminologist I forget that mapping can be used for other subjects besides crime, and this is an example of a very effective and important way of presenting a large amount of information. Being able to concisely present information on the nearly 14,000 cases of Swine Flu gives researchers the ability to present the data so that it is practical and easy to understand. By looking at the WHO map you can get a pretty good idea about where the Swine Flu has been the biggest problem. Sometimes the beauty of mapping is the simplicity, especially when looking at large amounts of data. Take a look at the WHO map by clicking on the link below.

WHO Map Website