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Dlamini, Sabelo Nick; Beloconi, Anton; Mabaso, Sizwe; Vounatsou, Penelope; Impouma, Benido; Fall, Ibrahima Soce 2019. Review of Remotely Sensed Data Products for Disease Mapping and Epidemiology.

High resolution remotely sensed (RS) data products remain of interest in disease mapping studies. However, previous usage of such satellite-derived products had been limited by high costs. There is also unprecedented space activity characterized by prolific satellite launches for various purposes, the chief of which being land cover observation. Therefore, there is need for information availability on the type of data products obtainable from the captured satellite images in order to facilitate access and utilization. Clearly, the remote sensing landscape is changing with the advent of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle/drones and spatially explicit images being captured at relatively low costs. We conducted a review to find out which RS data products were accessible for disease mapping and epidemiology. Our aim was to document RS data products for disease mapping and to propose other such products that could be incorporated in disease mapping and epidemiology studies. In view of the fact that RS data products are rapidly evolving, image data of higher spatial and temporal resolutions in near-real time are already available to aid disease mapping. We presented a catalogue of indices from ecological studies that could be used as variables in disease mapping and epidemiology. Remotely sensed data products related to climate, meteorology, land use/cover, cartography and urban mapping are explored as potential indices for disease mapping. There remains a substantial amount of work to be conducted on the evaluation and validation of some of the indices presented in this study. Conversely, synergies between remote sensing experts and epidemiologists could be useful in the uptake and testing of some of the proposed RS data products presented in this work.