Spatial and temporal analysis of dengue infections in Queensland, Australia: Recent trend and perspectives

Rokeya Akter*, Suchithra Naish, Michelle Gatton, Hilary Bambrick, Wenbiao Hu, Shilu Tong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Dengue is a public health concern in northern Queensland, Australia. This study aimed to explore spatial and temporal characteristics of dengue cases in Queensland, and to identify high-risk areas after a 2009 dengue outbreak at fine spatial scale and thereby help in planning resource allocation for dengue control measures. Notifications of dengue cases for Queensland at Statistical Local Area (SLA) level were obtained from Queensland Health for the period 2010 to 2015. Spatial and temporal analysis was performed, including plotting of seasonal distribution and decomposition of cases, using regression models and creating choropleth maps of cumulative incidence. Both the space-time scan statistic (SaTScan) and Geographical Information System (GIS) were used to identify and visualise the space-time clusters of dengue cases at SLA level. A total of 1,773 dengue cases with 632 (35.65%) autochthonous cases and 1,141 (64.35%) overseas acquired cases were satisfied for the analysis in Queensland during the study period. Both autochthonous and overseas acquired cases occurred more frequently in autumn and showed a geographically expanding trend over the study period. The most likely cluster of autochthonous cases (Relative Risk, RR = 54.52, p<0.001) contained 50 SLAs in the north-east region of the state around Cairns occurred during 2013–2015. A cluster of overseas cases (RR of 60.81, p<0.001) occurred in a suburb of Brisbane during 2012 to 2013. These results show a clear spatiotemporal trend of recent dengue cases in Queensland, providing evidence in directing future investigations on risk factors of this disease and effective interventions in the high-risk areas.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0220134
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes


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