Friday, April 16, 2004
This Week in the News
reason for collecting, analyzing and disseminating information on a
disease is to control that disease. Collection and analysis should not
be allowed to consume resources if action does not follow."
After a full year of calls with well over 100 parties joining each session, participation is still strong and growing. If you haven't called in yet, you should consider doing so.
One-page PRAMS Reports Available Online
Many new reports have been placed online, with data that provides valuable information to the statewide medical community.
►2004 Statewide Epidemiology Seminar Coming Soon
The announcement has been made, the information is online, and now is the time to start clearing your calendar for the statewide seminar, coming May 18-19.
Acquainted - Meet Statistician Curt Miller|
Mr. Miller is the epidemiologist responsible for the newly-released PRAMS reports on mother and infant behavioral studies.
Foodborne Illness Primer for Physicians Announced|
The second edition has been published and is now available in print and via the Web.
|Epi Update Managing Staff:||
Rounds Set for April 27th|
This month's presentation on Analysis of Surveillance Data for H. influenza Invasive Disease is by Surveillance and Reporting Epidemiologist Lilian Kigonya, MB, Ch.B., MPH.
|John Agwunobi, MD, MBA, Secretary, Department of Health||
Numbers are in, Results are Appreciated|
The first-ever Epi Update readers' survey concluded a few weeks ago, and after a tally of the numbers, the editors made some pleasing discoveries.
Landis Crockett, MD,
Division of Disease
►Call for Conference Posters
Send your abstracts for the poster competition soon. The deadline for submissions is May 3rd.
Acting Bureau Chief,
Week on EpiCom|
If you haven't logged on recently, you don't know what's going on around the state.
A report outlining activities for the week of April 4 - 10, 2004 for confirmed cases.
A R T I C L E S
|Jaime Forth, Copy Editor / Writer, Bureau of Epidemiology||►Bi-weekly Conference Call|
This call was conducted on Friday, April 9, 2004. For interested parties who were unable to participate, the following is a brief rendition of the events discussed.
Announcements. Don Ward announced that the search for a state epidemiologist is on-going but appears to be drawing closer to completion.
bioterrorism grant turnaround timing will change and Tallahassee staff
will be working with regional co-chairs to resolve any issues resulting
from the changes. The new funding dates will be June 30 through July 1.
Set-up for the poster competition will commence immediately after lunch
this year, with a numbered table for each poster. For one hour prior to
the evening reception, judges will have the ability to review the
posters and interview the competitors. Deadline for submission of title
and abstract is May 3rd, so e-mail questions and/or information to Karen
email@example.com or phone her at 850.245.4444., ext.
2401. All posters will be accepted.
|►New One-page PRAMS Reports Available Online|
The latest collection of 2000-2001 PRAMS reports are available and accessible online. Please click the following link to view the available reports: http://www.doh.state.fl.us/disease_ctrl/epi/prams/prams.htm.
For further information concerning these
reports, contact Helen Marshall, at 850.245.4444, ext. 2415 or
Curt Miller at ext. 2407.
|Melanie Black, MSW, Professional Training Coordinator, Bureau of Epidemiology||
Statewide Epidemiology Seminar Coming Soon
The 9th Statewide Epidemiology Seminar entitled "Emerging Issues in Epidemiology," will be held at the Marriott Hotel in Lake Mary, Florida, 15 miles NE of downtown Orlando on May 18-19, 2004. Topics such as obesity, nosocomial infections prevalence in the U.S. and their impact on Florida, antibiotic resistance, inter-species transfer of organisms, mosquito-borne diseases, and using Florida’s survey data are among some of the issues that will be discussed.
There will be two new activities added to the program this year. The evening of May 17th there will be a dessert reception and the opportunity to pre-register for the first day, as well as a “County Showcase” which will provide county health departments the opportunity to bring educational resources they have developed for healthcare professionals, and share them with other county health departments. These items will be on display throughout the seminar. If your county would like to participate, please contact Melanie Black.
The poster session and reception will be held the evening of May 18th. The event will be judged again this year, with awards given for the best infectious disease poster, as well as for the best presentation by a Florida EIS fellow, the best chronic disease poster and, finally, the best county health department display. The winners will be announced at the following day’s luncheon. Another added feature to this year's program will be the “Golden Partnership” awards, presented to partners which have made significant contributions supporting disease surveillance and epidemiology.
To take advantage of the special group rate ($71.00), be sure to make your hotel reservations early. Call the Marriott directly at 407.995.1100 or through their reservation line at 800.228-9290. Refer the booking agent to the Florida Department of Health, Bureau of Epidemiology Seminar to receive the group rate. You can also reserve accommodations through the hotel website at www.marriott.com/MCOML. Click on the red button labeled Reserve a Room, enter the dates, and then scroll down to the box labeled “Group Code.” Enter FBEFBEA to receive the group rate and follow the instructions to complete the arrangement.
can be found on the Bureau of Epidemiology Internet website
contact Melanie Black at the Bureau of Epidemiology in Tallahassee at
850.245.4444, ext. 2448.
|Jaime Forth, Copy Editor/ Writer, Bureau of Epidemiology||
Acquainted - Meet Statistician Curt Miller
Curt Miller graduated from The Florida State University with a Bachelor of Science in statistics at a time when it appeared everyone else was on a bandwagon headed for a career in the computer industry. But primed with a minor in applied mathematics and business, Curt had his own path to follow.
His tenure in state
employment has carried him beyond statistics and into epidemiology.
Before joining the Florida Department of Health, Curt was
employed at the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration where he managed and compiled hospital inpatient and outpatient
data. Curt worked closely with data management teams at the clinical
level, as well as with agency data managers to assure the collection and
compilation of clean, accurate data with which to build some of the
largest, richest datasets in current use.
Foodborne Illness Primer for Physicians Announced
On April 7, 2004 a joint press conference was held in Washington, D.C. to announce the release of a second edition primer for physicians and other health care professionals to help them recognize, treat and report foodborne illnesses. This edition, Diagnosis and Management of Foodborne Illnesses: A Primer for Physicians and Other Health Care Professionals, was created through a partnership of the AMA and the American Nurses Association in conjunction with the CDC, the FDA and the USDA. The second edition builds on material presented in the first edition released in 2001 and contains five new sections on emerging foodborne illnesses, written with an emphasis on living in the post 9-11 environment.
The primer will be free to all health
care professionals and contains charts, scenarios and a continuing
medical education section. It is also being translated into Spanish.
Printed copies of the primer can be obtained by emailing your name,
mailing address and telephone number, as well as the number of copies
requested, to Dr. Eileen Parish at
or Howard Seltzer at
firstname.lastname@example.org. The second edition primer is also be
available online in Adobe PDF format at
|Lilian Kigonya, MB.Ch.B, MPH, Surveillance and Reporting Epidemiologist, Bureau of Epidemiology||
Rounds Set for April 27th
Heamophilus Influenza surveillance data was retrieved from Merlin, the web-based electronic reporting system of Florida. The data set Included 891 reported cases of Heamophilus influenza invasive disease for the years 1992-2003. The highest proportion of cases (46%) was seen in adults aged 65 and older, followed by children aged 4 years and younger (22%) with the lowest (5%) in those aged 5 years to 14 years. There has been an increase in the rate of H. influenzae invasive disease cases among adults aged 65. Evidence suggests immunization against H. Influenza type B among children indirectly prevents adult invasive disease. The results from our surveillance data did not support this hypothesis.
Jaime Forth, Copy Editor / Writer,
Bureau of Epidemiology
Numbers are in, Results are Appreciated
The editors of the Epi Update are appreciative of the support expressed by the readers who took time to answer the questions posed to them last month. The short, online survey was designed to quantify whether the editorial direction and overall shape of this journal have been meeting the needs of its readership. In the interest of brevity, we'll report only the top answers to each question. Keeping in mind that answers below 3% are not shown and that respondents did not answer every question, here is a view of the survey results:
1. When you access the Epi Update, which type of article do you generally turn to first?
38% said outbreak
2. Do you find the
Epi Update easy to access?
3. If you've never contributed an article to the journal, please tell us why.
39% said never
54% said the number
should remain the same, but main focus of the journal should still be
9. If you're not a
regular reader, what keeps you from reading Epi Update?
Based on the answers to these questions as well as additional comments offered by the respondents, readers will see small changes to the journal in upcoming issues.
One thing will not
change, though, and that's our desire to publish a journal of
epidemiological news and insight that is topical, stimulating, and of
high journalistic quality. As we mark our second full year of existence
on the Internet, we acknowledge that there will be occasional errors along
the way. Foremost in our minds, however, is our commitment to bringing readers a plethora of reliable information which
can be of assistance in the
battle against infectious diseases.
|Melanie Black, MSW, Professional Training Coordinator, Bureau of Epidemiology||
for Conference Posters
The Bureau of Epidemiology is actively seeking posters for its annual seminar in Lake Mary, Florida, scheduled for May 18-19, 2004.
Poster presentations give conference attendees a great opportunity to share research with colleagues and friends. Examples of poster topics include results of an outbreak investigation, new prevention programs at the local level or new laboratory methods in disease control. The session also presents an opportunity to demonstrate new computer and Web-based systems related to public health.
Format for posters will follow the basic scientific paper outline, where applicable:
the problem under investigation or hypothesis
The poster session and reception will occur the first evening of the seminar. Posters can be displayed in a three-fold form board format or any other appropriate conference style. Whichever method you choose, be sure to have a primary and secondary point of contact for presenting your poster. Each presenter will be responsible for ensuring his or her display is set up prior to the beginning of the session, and removed promptly afterward. Technical assistance will be available through Bureau of Epidemiology staff.
If you would like
to participate, contact Karen Wheeler at 850.245.4444, ext. 2401 or via
email@example.com no later than May 3.
|Pete Garner, Surveillance Systems Manager, Bureau of Epidemiology||
Week on EpiCom
No less than four flights from Hong Kong to the U.S. during recent weeks have carried persons with measles. If patient cases here in Florida have a history of a flight originating from Hong Kong and landing in either San Francisco or Seattle and have experienced an unexplained rash shortly afterward, health care providers may want to consider ruling out measles.
The Bureau of
Epidemiology encourages Epi Update readers to not only register on the
EpiCom system at
https://www.epicomfl.net but to browse EpiCom frequently and
contribute public health observations related to any suspicious or
unusual occurrences or circumstances, as appropriate. EpiCom is the
primary method of communication between the Bureau of Epidemiology and
other state medical agencies during emergency situations.
|Arbovirus Surveillance Team: Caroline Collins, Kristen Payne and Calvin DeSouza, and Program Manager Carina Blackmore, DVM, Ph.D., State Public Health Veterinarian, Bureau of Community Environmental Health||
No Florida counties are under medical alert. There have been no human cases confirmed yet this year. In areas with mosquitoes present, people are still encouraged to take precautions against mosquito bites.
WN Virus activity: There were two seroconversions to WN virus reported this week in sentinel chickens from Indian River (3/25) and Manatee (3/30) counties. So far this year, there have been 55 seroconversions to WN virus in 10 counties, two WN-confirmed dead birds from Marion and Miami-Dade counties, four WN-positive live birds from three counties and one WN-confirmed horse from Polk County. To date, 16 counties have reported confirmed WN virus activity this year.
SLE Virus activity: None this week. So far this year, five sentinel chickens from Lee County have tested positive for SLE.
EEE Virus activity: There were four seroconversions to EEE virus reported this week in sentinel chickens from Walton (2/25x3, 3/16) County. A live blue jay (captured 3/23) was reported EEE positive from Walton County. To date, 15 sentinel chickens, three horses and six live birds have tested positive for EEE virus, for a total of nine counties reporting EEE virus activity this year.
Virus activity: There were nine seroconversions to HJ virus reported
this week in sentinel chickens from Hillsborough
(3/16), Orange (3/12, 3/15x2), Volusia (3/15x2, 3/22) and Walton (3/15x2)
counties. To date, there have been ten
seroconversions to Highlands J virus in sentinel chickens from four