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Disease Surveillance – The Next Generation Technology Platform and Solutions

Disease Surveillance – The Next Generation Technology Platform and Solutions

In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, state governments worked diligently to ensure their disease surveillance technology was able to process an exponential increase in testing data from laboratories accurately and efficiently.  The pandemic highlighted the need for state technology platforms to have faster processing speeds, increased upstream data capture to include information such as preexisting conditions, contact tracing to pinpoint outbreak clusters and variants, and new automated real time reports that informed state, federal and local leadership.  Lessons learned from the current pandemic will be invaluable in the design of next generation infectious disease surveillance systems and the technology to ensure readiness to face future pandemics.

Technology Features for a Next Generation Disease Surveillance System:

  • A patient centric model that allows all patients’ public health events to be viewed from one central location.
  • Systems will be scalable, configurable, and interoperable with advanced monitoring, reporting and analytics capabilities.
  • Support for more than 140 different diseases and conditions (including general communicable diseases, hepatitis, vaccine-preventable diseases, meningitis, and tuberculosis).
  • The ability to add new conditions as needed, as well as to create data collection forms through a user interface.
  • The timely ability to customize the design of data collection forms as surveillance needs change and as new diseases of public health significance are identified.
  • Automated receipt of electronic laboratory reports and creation of a disease event when a case or laboratory report is received.
  • Automated receipt of electronic case reports from health care providers, other health information systems, and other public health organizations.
  • Real time data driven event triage for state and local public health personnel.
  • Real time data driven case management for confirmed cases, suspects and contacts.
  • Customizable decision support functionality for automated processing of electronic laboratory reports and electronically received public health case reports
  • Real time data and reports to support the surveillance and follow up processes used in public health investigations.
  • Contact tracing and proactive monitoring, with results electronically tracked to minimize chance of continued spread.
  • Integrate data with state supported contact tracing to expose clusters of outbreaks and emerging cases or variants traced to specific locations.
  • Reporting module to extract data for analysis, visualization, and reporting.
  • Near real time case reporting to CDC.
  • Electronic workflow assistance and task assignments.

In summary, the next generation surveillance systems will have expanded reporting capabilities enabling the state to share information more easily and quickly to organizations responding to a health crisis at the federal, state, and local levels.  The user interface will feature data flows, dashboards, and visualizations tools to public health officials enabling their ability to identify, track and analyze trends with greater precision and speed.  The next generation disease surveillance technology platforms will easily handle exponential increases in reported cases.  They will be easily configurable to changing public health events and fully interoperable so that data flows from all local points to the state health department. The new surveillance system will integrate monitoring capabilities enabling public health officials to identify outbreaks, emerging variants, and other threats quickly and accurately.  Reporting dashboards will provide immediate insights into dynamic population health trends.  



 About ReportingMD

ReportingMD’s electronic system will meet state health department’s changing data management needs. The system will integrate with other data sources, manage substantial volumes of data (as evident with COVID-19) and be compatible with national efforts to modernize reporting. ReportingMD will replace manage the investigation and response to infectious disease reports received by the State each year, in accordance with RSA 141-C. ReportingMD has the capacity to manage high volumes of disease reports and labs as seen with COVID-19 (over 130,000 cases to date). The current system supports millions of cases. In addition, ReportingMD has the capacity to digest and send electronic laboratory reports (ELR) and electronic case reports (eCR) as applicable and integrate with other data systems.  ReportingMD has been in alignment with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  ReportingMD has a strong track record working with  CDC, CMS, HHS, NQR, Hl7, CCD, CDA, FHIR and other national standards for transmitting data. ReportingMD’s capabilities include system development, transition, data migration, and maintenance.  Adding a state to our TOM Platform will represent less than 5% of our national healthcare data assets currently managed.


With ReportingMD’s Total Outcomes Management™ (TOM) platform, hosted in the Microsoft Azure Cloud, custom development services, and dedicated advisors will track and monitor cases of reportable diseases. TOM will the ability to manage new and emerging public health threats (such as outbreaks or exposure events), securely transmit and receive data in multiple formats (e.g., electronic laboratory reports (ELR) and electronic case reports (eCR), integrate with other data systems utilized by the state, and align with the CDC’s Data Modernization Initiative by submitting data via message mapping guides (MMG) and meeting future modernization goals. In addition, TOM has the ability and capacity to efficiently digest and store large volumes of data without impacting system functionality, produce both pre- prepared and user-specified reports, export data into multiple software platforms and file formats, and integrate data types (e.g., sexually transmitted infections and other communicable diseases) and systems (e.g., contact tracing and surveillance data).


TOM  provides simple and advanced search and export functions that can be exported into multiple file formats for the State to integrate data into statistical and visualization systems. TOM will generate standard reports for both investigation and epidemiology staff and include advanced report settings for super users to develop additional reports and visualizations as needed. TOM tools and functionality will respond to and manage outbreaks, such as the ability for state staff to rapidly develop and deploy forms for electronic, secure, HIPAA- compliant submission of data by external entities (such as provider reports and patient surveys).  ReportingMD stands ready to meet the state’s ever changing data management needs.