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Surveillance / Informatics: Reportable Condition Knowledge Management System

What is RCKMS?
The Reportable Condition Knowledge Management System (RCKMS) is an authoritative, real-time portal to enhance disease surveillance. RCKMS provides comprehensive information on public health reporting requirements to public health reporters such as clinicians and laboratories.
The RCKMS tool consists of 3 parts:

1. Authoring Interface: A web portal for public health agencies to input, edit and manage their jurisdictional reporting criteria

    • Public health users enter their jurisdictional reporting specifications through the Authoring Interface website.
    • To ease the burden of users having to input criteria from scratch, the authoring interface comes pre-populated with default reporting specifications. Users can choose to adopt and use the default as is, or adjust it to meet their jurisdictional needs.
    • The tool also includes commonly requested optional reporting specifications that jurisdictions can select from. If the listed options do not meet a jurisdiction’s needs, a user can also request for the addition of a specific criteria.

2. Knowledge Repository: The database containing data on reporting specifications

    • After being entered by users, reporting specifications are stored in the knowledge repository and deployed to the decision support service.
3. Decision Support Service: A decision support service (DSS) that healthcare reporters can invoke to determine if a potential case is reportable, and to which jurisdiction(s)
    • The RCKMS DSS is invoked by an automated call from an EHR system, either directly or through an intermediary service
    • The DSS returns a response of whether the potential case is reportable, which jurisdiction(s) it may be reportable to, and other relevant reporting information
Accurate, timely and complete coverage of reportable conditions depends on healthcare reporters having correct and current information regarding specific reporting criteria.
RCKMS aims to address the following challenges with the existing reporting system:
  • Reporting criteria are difficult for human users to locate, as there is no single place where information can be accessed.
  • Reporting criteria are complex and differ across state and local jurisdictions
  • Information is generally human-readable and not in a format suitable for machine-processing
Benefits for Public Health
The RCKMS strengthens disease surveillance in the US by:
  • Providing a single authoritative portal for public health to efficiently author, manage and update reporting specifications as they change over time
  • Providing a mechanism to communicate updates to reporters
  • Improving the completeness of case reports sent to public health by reporters
  • Advocating examination of variability in reporting existing across jurisdictions
Benefits for Reporters
The RCKMS can decrease the time and effort needed by healthcare professionals to comply with reporting requirements by providing:
  • A centralized location to view, query and download information on PH reporting requirements
  • A centralized decision support service that can provide an automated determination of whether a case is reportable and to which jurisdiction(s)
  • A mechanism to receive updates of when PH requirements are changed or updated (future functionality)
RCKMS and electronic case reporting
RCKMS aligns with national initiatives supporting interoperability and the implementation of electronic case reporting (eCR).
  • RCKMS is envisioned to be part of an initial implementation of a centralized infrastructure for eCR, proposed by the Digital Bridge initiative:
    • RCKMS will be hosted centrally on the APHL Informatics Messaging Service (AIMS) Platform.
    • EHR systems will implement the Reportable Conditions Trigger Codes (RCTC) in their systems.
    • A match in the EHR to the RCTC would trigger the sending of a report to the AIMS platform, which invokes the RCKMS DSS for evaluation.
    • RCKMS determines the reportability of the eICR.
    • A Reportability Response is generated documenting if any condition(s) were found to be reportable, to which jurisdiction(s) reporting is required and additional information, such as contact information of the relevant PHA.
    • If the potential case is found reportable, AIMS routes the RR back to the HC provider and the eICR and RR to the appropriate PH jurisdiction
  • RCKMS uses current standards for eCR including the HL7 initial electronic case report version 1.1 (eICR v1.1) data format.
  • RCKMS aligns initiatives supporting interoperability including the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, ONC’s S&I Framework and Meaningful Use Objectives.
History of RCKMS and CSTE
CSTE has been partnering with CDC and a decision support implementer HLN since 2014 on the RCKMS project. The historical timeline and major achievements are as follows:
  • RCKMS pilot – Fall 2014 – Fall 2015
    • Tested application and use of the centralized system
    • Technical development of the tool
    • Content development
  • RCKMS Phase II – Fall 2015 – June 2016
    • Continuation of pilot production
    • Advance of the technical development of device
    • Deployment of tool in production field
    • Extension of content development
  • RCKMS Phase III – Fall 2016 – June 2017
    • Continuation and progress of Phase II
    • Complete and implement default content on 2017
Contact Us:
For more information, please contact rckms@cste.org.
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