Format

Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Acad Emerg Med. 2012 Nov;19(11):1227-34. doi: 10.1111/acem.12013.

A novel image-based tool to reunite children with their families after disasters.

Author information

1
Division of Emergency Medicine, Children's Hospital, Boston, MA, USA. sarita.chung@childrens.harvard.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Reuniting children with their families after a disaster poses unique challenges. The objective was to pilot test the ability of a novel image-based tool to assist a parent in identifying a picture of his or her children.

METHODS:

A previously developed image-based indexing and retrieval tool that employs two advanced vision search algorithms was used. One algorithm, Feature-Attribute-Matching, extracts facial features (skin color, eye color, and age) of a photograph and then matches according to parental input. The other algorithm, User-Feedback, allows parents to choose children on the screen that appear similar to theirs and then reprioritizes the images in the database. This was piloted in a convenience sample of parent-child pairs in a pediatric tertiary care hospital. A photograph of each participating child was added to a preexisting image database. A double-blind randomized crossover trial was performed to measure the percentage of database reviewed and time using the Feature-Attribute-Matching-plus-User-Feedback strategy or User-Feedback strategy only. Search results were compared to a theoretical random search. Afterward, parents completed a survey evaluating satisfaction.

RESULTS:

Fifty-one parent-child pairs completed the study. The Feature-Attribute-Matching-plus-User-Feedback strategy was superior to the User-Feedback strategy in decreasing the percentage of database reviewed (mean ± SD = 24.1 ± 20.1% vs. 35.6 ± 27.2%; mean difference = -11.5%; 95% confidence interval [CI] = -21.5% to -1.4%; p = 0.03). Both were superior to the random search (p < 0.001). Time for both searches was similar despite fewer images reviewed in the Feature-Attribute-Matching-plus-User-Feedback strategy. Sixty-eight percent of parents were satisfied with the search and 87% felt that this tool would be very or extremely helpful in a disaster.

CONCLUSIONS:

This novel image-based reunification system reduced the number of images reviewed before parents identified their children. This technology could be further developed to assist future family reunifications in a disaster.

PMID:
23167852
DOI:
10.1111/acem.12013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Wiley
    Loading ...
    Support Center