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The Meaningful Impact of Position Statements

Posted By Virginia Dick, Friday, January 09, 2015
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CSTE members work hard each spring to develop position statements, which address a broad range of public health issues and health conditions for standardized surveillance. Over the past four years, there have been between 10 and 30 position statements submitted each year. Many of these position statements have had significant impacts on the public health environment. Below are a few of the position statements that have specifically addressed public health policy areas and the progress that has been made in these areas.
10-EH-01 Asthma: a continuing public health priority and 13-CD-01 Revision to the National Chronic Disease Indicators
These indicators involve CDC, NACDD, and CSTE updating and revising the Chronic Disease Indicators. The 2010 Environmental health position statement involved the partners working together to update the Asthma Indicators that are part of the Chronic Disease Indicators. After three years of review, revisions, and additions by experts, the full list of indicators is being released January 15, 2015, including a CDC MMWR and a new website. In addition, due to the position statement process and advocacy, CDC continues to fund state partners to conduct asthma surveillance, and provide technical epidemiologic support to funded states. The work on asthma has helped lay groundwork in preparation for the Coordinated Federal Action Plan to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Asthma Disparities.
10-ID-28 Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CSTE-CDC) Process for Setting National Standards for Healthcare-Associated Infections Case Criteria and Data Requirements
This position statement addresses the process for setting Healthcare-Associated Infection case criteria and data requirements. A CDC-CSTE HAI standards committee has been created and has met regularly for the past two years.
11-OH-01 CDC and Cleaning Products Messages
NIOSH convened an international working group in the NORA Health Care and Social Services sector with expertise in infectious disease and occupational health to develop an analysis of cleaning products and infection control in healthcare. In 2012, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) published a publication called “Protecting Workers Who Use Cleaning Chemicals.
12-CD-01 Proposed New and Revised Indicators for the National Oral Health Surveillance System and 12-CD-02 Developmental and Emerging Indicators for the National Oral Health Surveillance System
The National Oral Health Surveillance System (NOHSS) includes developmental and emerging indicators. A workgroup was assembled in 2012 that published a publication in 2013 called “State-based Oral Health Surveillance Systems: Conceptual Framework and Operational Definition.” There is a group that is now reviewing the indicators and working towards a 2015 position statement to revise the indicators. There are also 21 states with funded state oral health programs for the 2013-2018 period. In 2014, the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors State Synopsis added a new section on state surveillance systems which assess the availability and use of selected NOHSS indicators. This will be released on the ASTDD site: http://www.astdd.org/publications/
13-ID-02 Healthcare-Associated Infections Data Presentation and Reporting Standards
A workgroup was formed in the fall of 2013 and it meets regularly via conference call. The workgroup produced the first draft of a toolkit which was presented at the 2014 conference with feedback currently being integrated into the toolkit. It is anticipated that the toolkit will be completed by winter 2015. Read more about this position statement and the current timeline here.

Virginia Dick, PhD is Deputy Epidemiology Program Director and Chief Program Evaluator at the CSTE national office.
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