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KT-led consortium to monitor infectious diseases using big data

All News 10:49 July 07, 2017

SEOUL, July 7 (Yonhap) -- A consortium led by telecom giant KT Corp. will monitor and combat infectious diseases in real-time by using big data, the company said Friday.

The consortium was selected by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning to establish the big data system for monitoring and surveillance of the infectious diseases, such as the Zika and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

The consortium includes credit card firm BC Card, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC), and the Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency.

KT will run a pilot program to establish a surveillance system to log people who have visited animal farms to track disease incidence as pathogens spread across the country.

Earlier, KT joined hands with the KCDC to provide information about virus outbreaks in other countries to people using roaming services overseas. KT also provided roaming data pertaining to whether their users had visited locations of disease outbreaks to the KCDC.

The program comes after mounting calls that a strengthened monitoring system is needed to prevent the spread of infectious diseases in recent months. Zika cases have raised concerns of a widespread epidemic in South Korea just a year after an outbreak of MERS.

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