Analysis of Heat Illness using Michigan Emergency Department Syndromic Surveillance


The MSSS, described elsewhere (1), has been in use since 2003 and records Emergency Department (ED) chief complaint data along with the patient’s age, gender and zip code in real time. There were 85/139 hospital EDs enrolled in MSSS as of June 2012, capturing 77% of the annual hospital ED visits in Michigan. The MSSS is used routinely during the influenza season for situational awareness and is monitored throughout the year for aberrations that may indicate an outbreak, emerging disease or act of bioterrorism. The system has also been used to identify heat-related illnesses during periods of extreme heat. Very young children, the elderly, and people with mental illness and chronic diseases are at the highest risk of preventable heatrelated illnesses including sunburn, heat exhaustion, heat stroke and/or death (2). During a heat wave in the summer of 2012, data was reviewed on an ad hoc basis to monitor potential increases in heat-related ED visits.


The purpose of this work was to conduct an enhanced analysis of heat illness during a heat wave using Michigan’s Emergency Department Syndromic Surveillance System (MSSS) that could be provided to Public Health and Preparedness Stakeholders for situational awareness.

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Original Publication Year: 
Event/Publication Date: 
December, 2012

January 24, 2018

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National Syndromic
Surveillance Program

The National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) is a collaboration among states and public health jurisdictions that contribute data to the BioSense Platform, public health practitioners who use local syndromic surveillance systems, Center for Disease Control and Prevention programs, other federal agencies, partner organizations, hospitals, healthcare professionals, and academic institutions.

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