Customizing ESSENCE Queries for Select Mental Health Sub-indicators

Syndromic surveillance systems, although initially developed in response to bioterrorist threats, are increasingly being used at the local, state, and national level to support early identification of infectious disease and other emerging threats to public health. To facilitate detection, one of the goals of CDC's National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) is to develop and share new sets of syndrome codes with the syndromic surveillance Community of Practice.

June 18, 2019

Development of a Custom Spell-Checker for Emergency Department Data

Emergency department (ED) syndromic surveillance relies on a chief complaint, which is often a free-text field, and may contain misspelled words, syntactic errors, and healthcare-specific and/or facility-specific abbreviations. Cleaning of the chief complaint field may improve syndrome capture sensitivity and reduce misclassification of syndromes. We are building a spell-checker, customized with language found in ED corpora, as our first step in cleaning our chief complaint field.

June 18, 2019

Impact of the NSSP’s transition to ESSENCE on chief complaint field-based syndromes

In January 2017, the NSSP transitioned their BioSense analytical tools to Electronic Surveillance System for Early Notification of Community-Based Epidemics (ESSENCE). The chief complaint field in BioSense 2.0 was a concatenation of the record's chief complaint, admission reason, triage notes, and diagnostic impression. Following the transition to ESSENCE, the chief complaint field was comprised of the first chief complaint entered or the first admission reason, if the chief complaint was blank.

January 21, 2018

Data Quality Improvements in National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) Data

The National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) is a community focused collaboration among federal, state, and local public health agencies and partners for timely exchange of syndromic data. These data, captured in nearly real time, are intended to improve the nation's situational awareness and responsiveness to hazardous events and disease outbreaks.

January 21, 2018

Monitoring Trends of Self-diagnosis in New York City Emergency Departments

The number of US adults who use the internet to access health information has increased from about 95 million in 2005 to 220 million in 2014. The public health impact of this trend is unknown; in theory, patients may be able to better help the doctor arrive at the correct diagnosis, but self-diagnosed patients may also inappropriately self-treat or delay going to the doctor.

November 22, 2017

Using Hospital ED Data to Identify Mental Illness Trends After Hurricane Sandy

EDCC data provides an opportunity for capturing the early mental health impact of disaster events at the community level, and to track their impact over time. However, while rapid mental health assessment can facilitate a better understanding of the acute post-disaster period and aid early identification of persons at long-term risk,1 determining how wide a net to effectively capture the critical range of mental health sub-categories has not yet been clearly defined.

December 20, 2017

Emergency Department Chief Complaint Versus Discharge Diagnosis for Tracking Disease Measures

ESSENCE is a web-based syndromic surveillance system utilized by DHMH to detect and track outbreaks, suspicious patterns of illness, public health emergencies, and biological threats. ESSENCE ED chief complaint data is collected daily from 47 emergency departments in Maryland (all 45 acute care hospitals and 2 freestanding emergency medical facilities). A chief complaint in ESSENCE is a free text field that lists the patient’s reason for the ED visit upon arrival at the hospital.

August 22, 2018

Effectiveness of Using a Chief Complaint and Discharge Diagnosis Query in ESSENCE-FL to Identify Possible Tuberculosis Patients and Contacts in Hillsborough County, Florida

The Electronic Surveillance System for the Early Notification of Community-based Epidemics in Florida (ESSENCE-FL) is a web-based application for use by public health professionals within the Florida Department of Health (FDOH). The main source of data for ESSENCE-FL is emergency department (ED) data. Ten hospitals in Hillsborough County, Florida send their data to the ESSENCE-FL server. ESSENCE-FL requires only a limited data set to be sent by the hospital which includes patient chief complaint (CC) and discharge diagnosis (DD).

August 22, 2018

Detecting Unanticipated Increases in Emergency Department Chief Complaint Keywords

The CC text field is a rich source of information, but its current use for syndromic surveillance is limited to a fixed set of syndromes that are routine, suspected, expected, or discovered by chance. In addition to syndromes that are routinely monitored by the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (e.g., diarrhea, respiratory), additional syndromes are occasionally monitored when requested by outside sources or when expected to increase during emergencies.

August 22, 2018

Identifying Clusters of Rare and Novel Words in Emergency Department Chief Complaints

A goal of biosurveillance is to identify incidents that require a public health response. The challenge is creating specific definitions of such incidents so they can be detected. In syndromic surveillance, this is accomplished by classifying emergency department chief complaints, nurse triage calls, and other prediagnostic data into categories, and then looking for increases in visits related to those categories. This approach can only find incidents that match those predefined categories.

April 28, 2019

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National Syndromic
Surveillance Program

Email:nssp@cdc.gov

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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