World’s First Holistic and Comprehensive Index on COVID-19

  • Sunway University is collaborating with PEMANDU Associates and Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) Malaysia on the Global COVID-19 Index (GCI).
  • The GCI is the world’s first holistic and comprehensive index on COVID-19, consolidating data on the pandemic from verified sources of 184 countries into a comprehensive index to which governments, businesses, and communities can reference.

With the slew of news, data and opinions scattering around COVID-19, Sunway University joins forces with PEMANDU Associates and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation Malaysia (MOSTI)  to develop a dynamic dashboard that consolidates COVID-19 data from 184 countries into a comprehensive Global COVID-19 Index (GCI) to which governments, businesses and communities can reference.

Updated daily, the database ranks 184 countries based on how well they respond to the pandemic. At a glance, the GCI dashboard displays top 10 countries on the recovery index, countries with the highest increase in new cases, highest reduction in active cases, a recovery rating map with a rating guide for recovery and severity, a lockdown level map, global infection trend graph and a country comparison matrix.

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The GCI pulls and analyses data from various credible sources such as the Johns Hopkins University, Our World in Data, World Bank, Oxford COVID19 Government Response Tracker and the Global Health Security Index.

The GCI allows countries to gauge one another’s performance levels to better identify best practices and efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Reference hub for university researchers

Researchers from Sunway University’s School of Healthcare and Medical Sciences are currently deriving data to produce insights that would help governments and societies identify emerging trends from the GCI.

“For example, we have identified that countries that have high-ambient temperatures and low latitudes appear to have low COVID-19 case fatality rates which can serve to inform policy decisions and epidemiological research,” explained Professor Peh Suat Cheng, Professor of Pathology and Dean, School of Healthcare and Medical Sciences at Sunway University

Professor Peh Suat Cheng, Professor of Pathology and Dean, School of Healthcare and Medical Sciences and Professor Serge Demidenko, Dean of the School of Science and Technology at Sunway University are working closely with Woody Ang, Executive Vice President at PEMANDU Associates to identify and derive relevant data for the index.

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Replicable for potential future pandemics

According to the researchers at Sunway University, the existing framework of the GCI is replicable for future pandemics as it records datasets that are commonly analysed when outbreak tracing is carried out. Non-dynamic data will be regularly updated on a yearly basis, making it more responsive to battle unprecedented pandemics that may arise in the future.

According to Professor Serge Demidenko, Dean of the School of Science and Technology at Sunway University, his researchers have been interested to provide specialist support in Computer Database Technologies and application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to Data Analytics aiming to not just analyse past data, but also forecast and model future trends.

“During this COVID-19 time, AI and Analytics will allow us to use available data to understand the impact of the pandemic better and thus to assist to propose appropriate solutions. Our academics are available to team up with collaborators both locally and internationally to explore new recovery solutions for the post-COVID-19 world”, he said.

Best practices in health interventions for COVID-19

Key learnings from the GCI have been compiled into a comprehensive 118-page report titled ‘Global Lessons in Tackling COVID-19 – The Global Pathfinder Initiative’, published just this month. The report focuses on five main areas; investment protocols in high scale testing, extensive contact tracing, well enforced movement controls, transparent and strong communication and finally, strong leadership from the top with the hopes of informing policy and decision-making for future global health crises.

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