Utilization of Syndromic Surveillance with Multiple Data Sources to Enhance Public Health Response

In the event of a large-scale public health crisis, successfully detecting and assessing health threats and monitoring population health status over a sustained period of time is likely to require integration of information from multiple sources. In addition, this information must be shared at varying levels of detail both among different agencies or organizations within an affected locality and among response participants at local, state, and federal levels of government (1).

Use of Syndromic Surveillance Information for Expanded Assessment of Wildfire Disaster

Syndromic surveillance information can be a useful for the early recognition of outbreaks, acute public health events and in response to natural disasters. Inhalation of particulate matter from wildland fire smoke has been linked to various acute respiratory and cardiovascular health effects. Historically, wildfire disasters occur across Southern California on a recurring basis. During 2003 and 2007, wildfires ravaged San Diego County and resulted in historic levels of population evacuation, significant impact on air quality and loss of lives and infrastructure.

Use of Syndromic Surveillance of Emergency Room Chief Complaints for Enhanced Situational Awareness during Wildfires, Florida, 2008

By mid-May 2008, the State of Florida had 102 active wildfires affecting approximately 40,000 acres. In addition, the Mustang Corners Fire in Everglades National Park started on May 14 and burned throughout the month affecting another 40,000 acres of federal land. Smoke from several wildfires cast a haze over parts of south Florida, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a dense smoke advisory.

Tracking Health Effects of Wildfires: The Oregon ESSENCE Wildfire Pilot Project

Wildfires occur annually in Oregon, and the health risks of wildfire smoke are well documented1. Before implementing syndromic surveillance through Oregon ESSENCE, assessing the health effects of wildfires in real time was very challenging. Summer 2015 marked the first wildfire season with 60 of 60 eligible Oregon emergency departments (EDs) reporting to ESSENCE.

Monitoring the 2016 LA County Sand Fire with Multiple Early Detection Systems

On July 22, 2016, the Sand Fire began burning in the Santa Clarita Valley of Los Angeles County (LAC), CA. This urban-adjacent wildfire breached the city limits of Santa Clarita (population 180,000). Fueled by record heat and an ongoing exceptional drought, the Sand Fire burned over 40,000 acres in 13 days and caused a large increase in the air concentration of fine particulate matter. The syndromic surveillance team was tasked with reporting on possible health effects from the fire. Fire, asthma, and heat related data were monitored until the fire was reported as 98% contained.

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Email:syndromic@syndromic.org

This Knowledge Repository is made possible through the activities of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Cooperative Agreement/Grant #1 NU500E000098-01, National Surveillance Program Community of Practice (NSSP-CoP): Strengthening Health Surveillance Capabilities Nationwide, which is in the interest of public health.