30 March 2010

Research Committee Update: March Webinar Recording and April Literature Review

The recording of the Research Committee's webinar on "Overview and Public Health Surveillance Utility of Poison Center Data" is now available for viewing.

Looking ahead, the Literature Review subcommittee will be hosting a presentation by Michael A. Horst, PhD, MPHS, MS, whose paper "Observing the Spread of Common Illnesses Through a Community: Using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Surveillance" recently appeared in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine.

The subcommittee found this article particularly important because it represents an initiative to link health risk mapping with cluster detection methods that many health monitors employ. It is a link between classical spatial epidemiology and the ad-hoc methods needed for day-to-day surveillance.

The presentation will take place on Thursday, April 22nd at 12:00 pm EST.

PHPC Webinar: Integration of Reported and Syndromic Disease System Information

For its March meeting, the Public Health Practice Committee hosted a webinar on "Integration of Reported and Syndromic Disease System Information."

This webinar was initiated by ISDS member Amy Ising, and presented by Aaron-Kite Powell, MS, Surveillance Epidemiologist in the Bureau of Epidemiology at the Florida Department of Health.

Aaron Kite-Powell gave an overview regarding how Florida is incorporating visualizations of their reportable disease data into their syndromic surveillance system. The presentation was followed by a general discussion regarding the need for and benefits of comparing - on a regular, systematic basis - reportable disease data and syndromic surveillance data.

As a follow up to the discussion, we would like to invite further comments on this post, especially around the following:

Is anyone presenting reportable disease data and syndromic data in the same interface? If so, how? For example, are you incorporating aggregate reportable disease data into your syndromic system (as is FL DoH) or are you making syndromic information available in your reportable disease system? If not, do you have plans to? Why? Why not?

View webinar recording

10 March 2010

Research Committee March Webinar: "Overview and Public Health Surveillance Utility of Poison Center Data"

The ISDS Research Committee will be hosting a webinar, "Overview and Public Health Surveillance Utility of Poison Center Data," on Thursday, March 25th, 2010 from 11:00 am - 12:30 pm US EST.

Jonathan Colvin, Assistant Director, Drug and Poison Information Center

Along with two prominent ISDS members experienced in the public health application of these data:

Bill Storm, Syndromic Surveillance Epidemiologist, Ohio Department of Health

Amy Ising, NC DETECT Program Director, Dept of Emergency Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Register here

Meaningful Use Webinar Slides & Presentation Now Available

If you weren't able to join ISDS and the Distribute Community of Practice for our "Meaningful Use" webinar last week, the slides and recording are now available online.



Please don't forget to submit your feedback on this important topic to us by Friday, March 12th! The ISDS Board of Directors will be incorporating your input into their final recommendation.

04 March 2010

ISDS Seeks Comments on the Proposed Rules for Meaningful Use

Two proposed regulations from ONCHIT and CMS provide certification criteria and measures for implementing the first stage of electronic health record (EHR) incentive programs enacted under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act). These programs will provide reimbursements to hospitals and providers who become "meaningful users" of EHR technology. Under the proposed regulations, one goal of meaningful use (MU) is to improve population and public health.

The ISDS Board will submit comments on the proposed regulations by the March 15, 2010 deadline. In particular, ISDS Board wants to focus their comments on two proposed certification criteria and measures (or tests) that impact the ability of public health authorities to conduct surveillance using syndromic or electronic health care data. These can be viewed in this document.

ISDS is currently seeking input from ISDS membership and the Distribute CoP on these criteria and measures. Input will be completely voluntary and confidential, and the information will be used to assemble a well informed and robust commentary from the ISDS Board. Please take 5-10 minutes to complete our on-line comment collection form.

To learn more about Meaningful Use, please register for our 30 minute webinar, "Meaningful Use: What it is and why it matters" This webinar will help you gain a better understanding of Meaningful Use, how it may impact your surveillance work, and how you can work with ISDS to represent your perspective and that of your local or state health agency.

Please let us know your thoughts by submitting your comments, attending the webinar, or replying to this blog post.

Best Regards,
Charlie Ishikawa
Community of Practice Coordinator, Distribute

Special Webinar Event On Meaningful Use: What it is and Why it Matters

Title: Meaningful Use: What it is and why it matters
Date: Friday, March 5, 2010
Time: 3:00 PM - 3:30 PM EST

Register here
After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.

Please join ISDS and our expert panelists, Art Davidson (Denver Health) and Julia Gunn (Boston Public Health Commission), for a 30 minute webinar on Meaningful Use and electronic health record technology. Participating in this webinar will help you gain a better understanding of Meaningful Use, how it may impact your surveillance work, and how you can work with ISDS to represent your perspective and that of your local or state health agency.

On March 15th, 2010 ISDS will submit comments to the Federal government on the proposed measures and certification criteria for Meaningful Use in electronic health record technology. ISDS is seeking comments from members and the Distribute CoP on those measures and criteria that impact the availability of syndromic or electronic health care data for public health authorities.

Please submit your comments using our on-line survey.

The survey will remain open until noon on 3/12/2010.

01 March 2010

2009 Davies Award Recipients to Speak at HIMSS10

In September 2009, ISDS Board Director Julia Gunn (Boston Public Health Commission) and ISDS member Art Davidson (Denver Public Health) accepted 2009 Davies Awards of Excellence on behalf of their organizations for their use of electronic health records (EHRs) in public health surveillance. Both are contributors to the Distribute Project, and will be presenting at the HIMSS10 Conference this week.

On Tuesday, March 2nd from 2:15-3:15 pm, Gunn and Davidson will give a talk entitled "Beyond Implementation: Innovative Public Health Uses of EHRs" (Session 129) as a part of the education series taking place at this conference. Their talk is one of several in a series providing insight on what it took to win a Davies Award in 2009.

Earlier entry on BPHC and the 2009 Davies