Online Program

Electronic Dashboard for Automatic Daily Sharing of Absenteeism as a Surveillance System

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 : 1:10 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Lisa Gren, PhD, MSPH, Division of Public Health, Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT
Kimberley Shoaf, DrPH, Division of Public Health, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT
Sarah Willardson, MPH, Davis County Health Department, Farmington, UT
Brian Hatch, Davis County Health Department, Clearfield, UT
In order to be able to detect potential outbreaks in a school setting, weekly absenteeism data were extracted manually from the school district and analyzed by an epidemiologist.  Weekly data only allowed to the health department to retroactively identify potential outbreaks.  A working group of the County Health Department, School District, academic colleagues and a web developercreated an online platform that automates the extraction of absenteeism data and  trend analysis on a daily basis.    The system utilizes a moving average and several rules to generate alerts.  A 3 Standard Deviation from the mean generates a red alert.  The use of Control Charts with General Electric rules allows for lower level  alerts to be issued as well.  The system was implemented in November 2014 and used successfully through the remainder of the 2014/15 school year.  Evaluation of the implementation will be finalized at the end of the school year.  The use of an automated electronic system allows for more timely detection of abnormalities in attendance that may reflect an outbreak.  It is also more sustainable than manually extracting and analyzing the data, reserving manpower for data review and decisionmaking  for follow-up.  The system is designed such that warnings may be sent to select individuals or everybody in the system (potentially including parents). Currently the alert is sent to public health officials to review prior to action.  The system also allows for messaging on possible education and preventive actions (such as desk cleaning in the classroom or reminders about hand sanitation).

Learning Areas:

Communication and informatics
Protection of the public in relation to communicable diseases including prevention or control

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the benefits of an automated system for sharing daily absenteeism between schools and public health.

Keyword(s): Surveillance, Emergency Preparedness

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a DrPH and am a professor of Public Health with a specialty in Emergency Public Health. I am the PI of the described project.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.