Syndromic surveillance is a strategy used by public health for early event detection and monitoring of the health of a community.
Highlight and copy the desired format. Innovative Uses for Syndromic Surveillance. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 16 4 Surveillance and control of communicable diseases are critical for the health status of a community.
However, reportable diseases are often underreported to health departments 12. The system categorizes chief complaints into 11 syndromes: Staff epidemiologists rotate duties and dedicate 2 hours a day, including weekend, to syndromic surveillance activities. Monday through Friday daily reports are sent to community partners.
Syndromic surveillance was primarily designed to detect disease outbreaks and unusual public health events earlier than could be detected by traditional public health surveillance methods.
However, if an outbreak or cluster of illness is too small, the method used currently for syndromic surveillance cannot trigger a statistical alert. We wanted to ascertain the value of syndromic surveillance in improving regular communicable disease surveillance and reporting.
The possibility of using ESSENCE to detect specific diseases emerged when varicella chickenpox became a newly reportable disease in Florida in ; few cases were being reported despite the fact that guidelines had been mailed to all healthcare practitioners. After we did preassessment of the underreporting of chickenpox in 4three additional query categories for daily investigation were created in ESSENCE.
The Study The following category queries were performed during March—December If the disease was confirmed, further investigation was performed. After further investigation, we found This cluster of potentially epidemiologically linked patients did not initiate an automated alert in a syndrome in ESSENCE, and the hospital did not report it by phone immediately.
Therefore, without the query, the health department would not have been aware of these patients in a timely manner. The findings from the query enabled health department staff to give postexposure prophylaxis to 36 persons identified as close contacts.
Gastrointestinal outbreaks are an example of outbreaks not detected by regular alerts in ESSENCE that were often detected through the use of the specialized query. One outbreak identified was among persons staying in the same homeless shelter Table 2another was among residents at an assisted living facility, and a third was among a group of persons who visited a restaurant.
After the outbreaks were confirmed with the Infection Control Practitioner, recommendations for infection control and prevention were made to each facility. The most common terms found under other reportable diseases or conditions were meningitis, hepatitis, chicken pox, and postexposure prophylaxis for rabies Table 2.
These 4 conditions accounted for When we contacted providers with regard to query findings, it was apparent that some providers were not familiar with reporting requirements for chicken pox and animal bites requiring postexposure prophylaxis for potential rabies exposure.
Results demonstrated how expanded queries can detect potential outbreaks or diseases not found in automated syndrome categories. Without the specialized queries, we would have missed the opportunity to implement proper disease control measures required for these events. Syndromic surveillance systems use statistical algorithms to alert users when the number of reports for a syndrome exceeds the norm 6.
Current spatial—temporal algorithms are used to detect large-scale outbreaks over a certain extended period 78.
However, this method has not been successful for detecting many small clusters of patients with similar characteristics visiting the emergency department from the same home ZIP code, hospital, or within a short period, such as a few minutes.Syndromic surveillance is a strategy used by public health for early event detection and monitoring of the health of a community.
It uses “pre diagnostic” information, such as chief complaints from people seeking acute care, to identify emerging trends. Additionally, the Recommendations suggest Stage 3 of Meaningful Use rules for the syndromic surveillance objective and future EHR certification criteria.
To view the final Recommendations and learn more about the project, please visit the ISDS MU Inpatient and Ambulatory page. Syndromic surveillance uses existing heath data sources for the purposes of near real-time surveillance of public health issues.
The primary use of emergency department (ED) and urgent care center (UCC) visit information is for clinical care of patients by the health care facility.
Syndromic surveillance systems use statistical algorithms to alert users when the number of reports for a syndrome exceeds the norm.
Current spatial–temporal algorithms are used to detect large-scale outbreaks over a certain extended period (7, 8). Syndromic surveillance systems might enhance collaboration among public health agencies, health-care providers, information-system professionals, academic investigators, and industry.
However, syndromic surveillance does not replace traditional public health surveillance, nor does it substitute for direct physician reporting of unusual or suspect cases of public health importance. The Syndromic Surveillance project is designed and implemented to facilitate public health rapid detecting and response to unusual outbreaks of illness that may be the result of bioterrorism, outbreaks of infectious disease or other public health threats and emergencies.