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CSTE’s Ebola Virus Disease Activities

Posted By Lauren Reeves, Thursday, August 21, 2014

http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/pdf/infographic.pdfCSTE’s role as an advocate for state and local epidemiologists comes into focus during outbreaks and public health emergencies. CSTE is currently working with our members, CDC, and our public health partners to coordinate communication and facilitate information sharing about Ebola Virus Disease (EVD). CSTE and CDC have collaborated from the beginning on regular EVD briefing calls with State Epidemiologists and senior public health officials.

During situations like this EVD response, an enormous amount of information is disseminated very quickly. The CSTE National Office is a source for streamlined, accurate, and directed information for applied epidemiologists. CSTE is helping our members involved with emergency preparedness, infectious disease, and EVD to share best practices and experiences, ask questions, and conduct an open dialogue with their colleagues.

This week, CSTE launched a members-only webpage for up-to-date information, resources, and links about EVD. To access the page, members can log into the CSTE website with their logins and passwords. Links to help members who have forgotten their login email or password are available on the login screen. The EVD page gives CSTE members access to a discussion board forum, where members can contribute and share guidance and protocols, quarantine orders, and other documents from their jurisdictions. The forum also allows members to post questions and comments to facilitate conversation about managing the EVD crisis. CSTE has also compiled an after-hours phone list so jurisdictions and public health partners can easily access emergency contact information for state and local agencies.

CSTE and its partners are continuously working with CDC to discuss state and local jurisdictions’ needs to make sure their concerns are advocated for adequately. CSTE participates in national briefing calls as well as calls that focus on epidemiology to be more specific to the issues and concerns important to epidemiologists.
In addition, three CDC/CSTE Applied Epidemiology Fellows have been deployed to the CDC Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to augment EOC staffing during its activation. The Fellows are assisting with the data management team. Aiden Varan, a fellow placed in infectious disease in a joint assignment with San Diego County and the San Diego quarantine station, arrived at CDC to assist in early August. Hanna Oltean, a fellow working in infectious disease at the Washington State Department of Health, and Cara Bergo, a fellow placed at the Louisiana Department of Health working in maternal and child health, recently joined Aiden at the EOC. Additional fellows may be called to assist as the outbreak response continues.
CSTE and CDC have set up email accounts for specific questions related to each organization’s EVD preparedness and response activities. Contact the CSTE National Office at commandcenter@cste.org with EVD-related questions so that CSTE can focus and direct questions appropriately. State and local senior health officials who need assistance with EVD-related issues can contact CDC’s Incident Management System State Coordination Task Force EOC desk directly at eocsctfeocdesk@cdc.gov.
For more information, visit CSTE’s EVD webpage or CDC’s Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever webpage, which has the most up-to-date information from CDC.
To join and access CSTE’s members-only page, visit CSTE’s membership page.

Tags:  infectious disease  outbreak  staff spotlight 

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