250098 LHDs making use of available health IT resources and information: Expanding LHD Workforce capacities to meet new HIT demands

Monday, October 31, 2011: 8:51 AM

Michael Coletta, MPH , Division of Surveillance and Investigation Office of Epidemiology, Virginia Department of Health, Richmond, VA
German Gonzalez, MD, MPH , Disease Response and Control Division, Whatcom County Health Department, Bellingham, WA
It is important for both our current and future local health professionals to be equipped with the necessary knowledge, skills and tools to comply with public health informatics competencies in order to develop effective systems for applying health information technologies to public health practice and to contribute to research and policy development. NACCHO's 2010 Needs Assessment indicates that a strong need among LHDs is how to use clinical data to improve quality of care as well as develop requirements for information system development. Skill shortages in LHDs occur for many reasons; many LHDs cited time away from other duties was a barrier to workforce training in informatics along with the ever increasing budgetary restraints LHDs are faced with.

Without an understanding of informatics, public health professionals will lack the necessary foundation and ability to bridge their practice to the larger public health and clinical informatics infrastructure based on sound standards and knowledge management to meet national policy objectives. These skills will prove to be important as LHDs begin to receive data (immunizations, lab reporting, and syndromic surveillance) as part of the meaningful use program.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Communication and informatics
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines

Learning Objectives:
Identify tools and resources LHDs can use to identify and improve workforce capacity. Provide strategies for using clinical data to improve the publicís health.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Not Answered