Redlands, USA, 10 February 2007 – ESRI has announced the winners of the 2006 Communication, Service, and Vision Awards given to users of GIS technology in the health and human services fields. The World Health Organization (WHO) (Geneva, Switzerland), Denver Health Managed Care (Denver, Colorado), and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) (Bethesda, Maryland) received the awards during ESRI’s annual Health GIS Conference held at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado, in October.
Accepting the 2006 Communication Award was Brian Altonen, quality analyst for Denver Health Managed Care. This award is given to an organization participating in the conference’s Map Gallery for the poster that best communicates concepts, illustrates methods, creatively integrates data, and is relevant to health and human services. Altonen’s award-winning poster, titled ‘Applications of GIS to West Nile Virus Surveillance Programs: A Study of Disease Ecology’, illustrated how geospatial analysis of mosquito trap results, dead bird sightings, and wetlands is used to pinpoint infected mosquito breeding areas.
The 2006 Service Award, given to the WHO Public Health Mapping and GIS programme, recognizes an organization that uses GIS technology to serve the needs of the health and human services community beyond the call of duty. Since 1993, the WHO programme has led a global partnership promoting and implementing GIS to support decision making for a wide range of infectious disease and public health programmes. Accepting the award on behalf of WHO was Philippe Veltsos of the WHO Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications.
NCI received the 2006 Vision Award, presented to the organization that has gone beyond the traditional use of GIS within a health or human services organization. NCI was recognized for its ongoing GIS Database Development programme, innovative spatial data analysis, development of geovisualization tools, and communication of georeferenced statistics. Accepting the award on behalf of NCI was David Stinchcomb, geographer with NCI.