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Introduction to Statistical Methods for Biosurveillance by Ronald D. Fricker

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5

Statistical Models for Projecting the Situation

Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future.

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Statistical models are often used to formally characterize underlying relationships in data. In terms of situational awareness (SA), as the chapter title says, statistical models can be useful for projecting (i.e., forecasting) the current situation into the future. The goal is to provide a decision maker with an understanding of what the near-term trends are likely to be for a particular situation.

A benefit of statistical modeling, appropriately done, is that such models also provide estimates of forecast uncertainty. This is an important part of modeling that is sometimes overlooked or ignored. Simply put, a forecast without ...

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