Vector distribution modelling
Vector borne diseases are a specific group of infectious diseases that are a (re-)emerging threat to Europe. One important aspect of preparedness for vector borne diseases is the surveillance of the introduction, establishment and spread of the main disease vectors.
Through VectorNet, ECDC maintains a database on the presence and distribution of vectors in Europe. The Centre regularly publishes updated distribution maps at the NUTS3 unit level.
Substantial progress has been made in acquiring and validating available vector distributions. Yet vector species maps at the NUTS 3 level remain incomplete. Therefore, the 'gap analysis' methodology has been developed to provide estimates of the distribution status for those administrative units for which no information is currently available.
The basic modelling process involves establishing a statistical relationship between vector distribution data (the known presence, or absence status of a geographic area based on observations or expert opinion) and the values of a series of selected predictor covariates. These relationships are calculated for a set of sample locations, and the estimated equations are then applied to maps of the covariates which provi de values at a pixel resolution. This results in a modelled spatial distribution with the probability of presence at the resolution of the covariate maps (standardised at 1 kilometre).