On May 28th, 2009, the Research and Public Health Practice Committees will be co-hosting a webinar on the statistical and technological challenges faced by public health practitioners. At this time, the Committees are looking for informal abstract submissions to be presented. The following letter was sent out to members of the PHPC. If you are involved in routine health monitoring and would like to contribute, please see the contact information below.
Dear ISDS Public Health Practice Committee Member,
I am writing to invite you to participate in two initiatives to improve the coordination between the research community and public health practice. The ISDS Research and Public Health Practice Committees are organizing two panels addressing the statistical and technological challenges faced by public health practitioners, and are now looking for abstract submissions. The first panel will be a two-hour webinar on
The goal of the May webinar is to bring the current challenges faced by public health practitioners to the attention of the research community at large. Members of both Committees have expressed concern that much current research in disease surveillance has little application for public health practitioners. With an increasing emphasis on health information technology and exchange, public health practitioners need relevant, understandable analytic tools to manage information and make it useful. It is hoped that the invited panelists will be able to discuss concrete technical problems within the current (and future) constraints of practitioners.
If you are interested, please submit an informal abstract in the form of a problem description of up to one page. Your paragraphs should describe a practical problem potentially addressable with analytic tools. Write-ups will be considered for both the webinar and for APHA. No abstract format is required now, but those chosen for November may need formatting later. The collection of problem descriptions will be made available online, and some will be chosen for presentation. Submissions should follow these guidelines for maximum effectiveness:
a. Specific. Rather than “how do I combine different data sources”, more helpful would be: “I have ED visit data with data field information including … available on a daily basis, and nurse call data with information including … available on a weekly basis. How do I combine these sources of evidence for detection of excessive asthma exacerbations?” The more description of the application environment, the better for getting practical solutions.
b. The unavailability of data has kept many researchers away. If possible, state problems that can be approached without the need for data use agreements. If any authentic relevant data are available, say so in the description. Alternatively, a description of the data features might allow credible development and evaluation without real data.
c. Note any collaboration opportunities for new partnerships.
Write-ups should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Friday, April 3rd.