A Kansas State University-led research team is looking at social media as a tool to reduce and prevent diseases from spreading.
Researchers are studying whether a well-timed post from a public authority or trustworthy person could be as beneficial as flu shots, hand-washing or sneezing into an elbow.
« Infectious diseases are a serious problem and historically have been a major cause of death, » Faryad Sahneh, Kansas State University doctoral candidate in electrical engineering who is modeling the spread of epidemics in an effort to reduce them, said.
« During the last decades there has been a huge advancement in medication and vaccination, which has helped save many peoples » lives. But now there also has been a revolution in communication and information technology that we think could be used to develop an even more robust preventative society against infectious diseases, » Sahneh added.
Sahneh is working on the project with Kansas State University researchers Caterina Scoglio, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and expert in complex network modeling; Gary Brase, associate professor of psychology who studies how people make decisions; and Walter Schumm, professor of family studies and human services who studies family dynamics.