Health Systems for Syndromic and Epidemiological Surveillance

Health Systems for Syndromic and Epidemiological Surveillance

Débora Helena Job (National Laboratory for Scientific Computing (LNCC), Brazil), Antônio Tadeu Azevedo Gomes (National Laboratory for Scientific Computing (LNCC), Brazil & National Institute of Science and Technology on Medicine Assisted by Scientific Computing (INCT-MACC), Brazil) and Artur Ziviani (National Laboratory for Scientific Computing (LNCC), Brazil & National Institute of Science and Technology on Medicine Assisted by Scientific Computing (INCT-MACC), Brazil)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0888-7.ch010
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Abstract

Health surveillance practices date back to decades ago. Traditionally, such practices to gather health data have been manual; more recently, however, computerized health information systems have been applied to enhance and facilitate health information acquisition for surveillance. The so-called health surveillance systems put in practice the systematic acquisition of health data, which is stored and processed for expert analysis. This chapter makes a survey of health surveillance systems dedicated to syndromic and epidemiological surveillance, identifying the different design and technological strategies adopted in the development of such systems. The aims of such a survey are: (1) to provide practitioners with some information about the collective expertise of health information system architects in the design and implementation of syndromic and epidemiological surveillance systems; and (2) to pave the way for the establishment of software product lines dedicated to such systems.
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Background

The last years have witnessed an increasing amount of work dedicated to the study and development of Health Information Systems (HISes) in general, and surveillance systems in particular. Thacker, Stroup, and Dicker (2003) define surveillance systems as HISes that allow the

“Ongoing, systematic collection, analysis, and interpretation of health data essential to the planning, implementation, and evaluation of public health practice, closely integrated with the timely dissemination of these data to those who need to know” (p. 225).

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