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6th Annual Disaster Epidemiology Workshop Highlights Partnerships

Posted By Jessica Wurster, Ashley Conley, and Michael Heumann, Friday, June 5, 2015
Updated: Friday, June 5, 2015

Dr. Redd gives the keynote address at the 2015 CSTE Disaster Epidemiology Workshop

CSTE, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Association for County and City Health Officials (NACCHO), and Safe States Alliance, recently hosted the 6th Annual National Disaster Epidemiology Workshop on May 13-14 in Atlanta, Georgia. The workshop convened epidemiologists from state, territorial, and local health departments across the country along with partners from CDC, other federal agencies, academic institutions, and non-governmental organizations. Over 70 people attended in person and over 50 people participated via live webinar. The theme of the workshop was “Stronger Together: Building Partnerships and Moving Disaster Epidemiology Forward.”

Dr. Stephen C. Redd, MD, RADM, Director of the Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response at CDC, was the workshop’s keynote speaker. He discussed strategies to improve the response to public health emergencies, focusing on four emergencies: Bird Flu (2005-2009), H1N1 (2009-2010), Ebola (2014-2015), and the Haiti Earthquake (2010). Dr. Redd emphasized the importance of planning, emergency operation centers, adaptability, and risk communication when developing preparations for emergency responses.

The CSTE Disaster Epidemiology Subcommittee provided an overview of its major activities and accomplishments during the last year. The workshop was recorded and is now available to stream on the webinar library. Many workshop presentations are available on the CSTE Disaster Epidemiology Subcommittee webpage. The workshop included the following five sessions:
  1. Global Disaster Epidemiology Response to Ebola: Utilizing Innovative Surveillance Approaches for Monitoring and Tracking Cases, Contacts, and Travelers
    • State and Local Preparedness Efforts for Ebola Response
    • Challenges and Triumphs: Georgia’s Ebola Active Monitoring System
    • Monitoring of Individuals with Risk of Exposure to Ebola Virus Disease — United States, November 3, 2014 – March 8, 2015
    • Ebola Response in Rural Liberia
  2. Surveillance During Disasters: Building Partnerships in the Use of Technology and Tools
    • Partnering to Enhance Electronic Death Registration for Disaster Analysis
    • Developing a Primer to Improve Public Health Surveillance during Disasters
    • Healthy Shelters – Shelter Surveillance Workgroup
  3. Exploring the Role of Research in Moving DE Forward — Initiatives from NIEHS and NIOSH
    • NIH Disaster Research Response (DR2) Project: A Model for Overcoming the Challenges
    • Texas One Gulf
    • View from NIOSH on Disaster Responder Safety and Health: ERHMS and the Disaster Science Research Initiative
  4. Strengthening Partnerships for Conducting Disaster Epidemiology
    • An Introduction to Poison Control in the 21st Century
    • Interprofessional Education and Collaboration; A response to a Disaster
    • Unaccompanied Children: Surge and Surveillance
  5. Innovative Approaches and Partnerships for Disaster Response to Recent Events
    • The Use of CASPER in Two Communities Affected by the 2014 South Napa Earthquake
    • The Colorado Flood Disaster: The Impact on a Small Community
If you have any questions or would like more information about the CSTE Disaster Epidemiology Subcommittee, please contact Jessica Wurster.
Jessica Wurster, MPH is an Associate Research Analyst at the CSTE national office. Ashley Conley, MS, CPH, CHEP is chair of the Disaster Epidemiology Subcommittee and works as an epidemiologist at the city of Nashua Division of Public Health and Community Services in New Hampshire. Michael Heumann, MPH, MA is a CSTE consultant with HeumannHealth Consulting LLC. To see workshop presentations and join the subcommittee, visit CSTE’s Disaster Epidemiology page.

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