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Surveillance and health promotion informatics at work


New strategies are needed to accelerate the translation of data from public health research and surveillance to practice. There are well-documented barriers to the implementation of evidence based health promotion recommendations, and limited ability to adjust those recommendations to the current conditions as defined by information from regional surveillance, or to tailor them to the individual needs of citizens. We propose to adapt newly mature informatics technology, leveraging the emerging National Health Information Infrastructure (NHII) to shift the paradigm for health alerting and health promotion. The goal is to firmly ground these activities on real time information collected from and delivered to employees, in an interactive, secure, electronic environment. We will study influenza prevention and control, an archetype of public health practice requiring surveillance, communication, and timely influence of health-related behaviors. Specifically, we aim to develop a system for delivering tailored, targeted health messages to the workforce, through a personally controlled health record. The content and tempo of these messages will be modulated by real time surveillance of syndromes and laboratory data. Complex information gleaned from surveillance will be processed, translated and exchanged among citizens, public health practitioners and health care delivery systems. The goal is to provide citizens and employees with timely, individualized health promotion messages to improve their knowledge, attitudes and beliefs regarding influenza immunization, and to increase their rate of seasonal influenza immunization. We will measure the impact of the intervention primarily on the influenza vaccination rate among study participants. Secondary outcomes will be impact on rates of self-reported illness, and on knowledge, attitudes and beliefs about influenza. The formative evaluation will occur in two test beds, a major US corporation and a Canadian Province.


Funded by the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences through its Clinical and Translational Science Awards Program, grant number UL1TR002541.