Right Time Collaboration
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"The collection of photos on my entry shows testing, bacteria, our two institutions, and laboratory technique on a background of a Winnebago County map. All of these elements are needed for collaboration “right now”. All in all these photos relate to my research. Of all infectious diseases, influenza is of particular attention as it undergoes a high rate of antigenic change giving rise to a new type of influenza strain every year. The Rockford UIC campus has a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) laboratory machine. The county Health Department (HD) wants to use the machine for testing when an emergent influenza virus arrives (like H1N1) and have approval from the state for this. With this collaboration in place, testing could be done locally, and the HD could determine when to begin containment strategies such as closing schools, canceling social gatherings, and informing businesses to begin work-at-home policies to prevent further spread of infection. PCR testing gives the speed and precision needed to detect and respond effectively to emerging infectious disease outbreaks needing investigation and intervention. The collages of images were created to show collaboration and were taken with my own camera. The county map was taken from a public web site."