Mayo Clinic uses AI to map COVID-19 hot zones

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Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic teamed up with the state's health department to create an artificial intelligence-powered tool that can identify zones of greater COVID-19 transmission in southern Minnesota, Post Bulletin reports.

The method uses AI to determine rates of positive to negative cases in a given region. The data is then arranged by county and can calculate whether a greater portion of those tested in the region show up positive. Mayo Clinic and Minnesota's health department plan to expand the tool statewide, according to the report.

The platform will help the state monitor where cases show up most intensively and then use the results to predict where more cases will arise. Minnesota and Mayo Clinic will use the data to aid decisions about where to send testing resources and personal protective equipment. 

"Using this technology we found an area where there was a higher rate of positives for number of tests done," said Andrew Badley, MD, director of Mayo Clinic's HIV Immunology Laboratory, according to the report. "Because of that we've deployed more testing and [PPE] in that area. If we are able to diagnose more cases, we then could either quarantine or treat them as needed. Our hope is that already has impacted the spread of disease in that area."


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