Alumnus-Faculty Collaboration Yields Game-changing West Nile Research

Epidemiology and economics merged in a groundbreaking analysis of West Nile Virus data by SMU alumnus Robert Ware Haley ’67, M.D., and Tom Fomby, SMU Professor of Economics. Medical researcher Robert Haley '67, M.D., (left) and SMU economist Tom Fomby joined forces with Dallas County health officials on a groundbreaking study of data collected during the nation's largest outbreak of West Nile Virus, which occurred in Dallas County in 2012. The interdisciplinary University-community research collaboration reveals several key findings about West Nile outbreaks and points to the use of a mosquito vector index rating system to trigger early intervention. Those results are published in the July 17 issue of JAMA (The Journal of the American Medical Association), the prestigious peer-reviewed medical journal. Haley, Chief of Epidemiology and Professor of Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center, and Fomby, Director of the Richard B. Johnson Center for Economic Studies in Dedman College, joined forces with Wendy Chung, Chief Epidemiologist for the Dallas County Health and Human Services Department, and her colleagues, Christen Buseman, Sibeso Joyner and Sonya Hughes, in the study. James Luby, M.D., Professor of Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern and a longtime research collaborator with Haley, is also an author. >Read more about their West Nile research A senior author of the journal article, Haley calls the research a “stone soup” project, referring to the folk tale that demonstrates how cooperative efforts benefit the [...]