Two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is still trying to improve the way it collects and analyzes public health data.
A March 16th email reviewed by Politico from Dan Jernigan, the CDC’s deputy director for Public Health Science and Surveillance, mentioned the Data Modernization Initiative — a plan that would include integrating state and federal data systems and giving states funding to hire staffers to work with data.
The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the stark limitations of the US public health data systems: information is siloed at individual hospitals and local health departments and often takes a winding path before it gets to the federal level. Labs couldn’t send information on cases straight from their own data systems to the CDC, relying on emails and faxes to pass along information. Some data-collection programs required manual entry. It took weeks and months for federal agencies to figure out answers to questions that other countries had the systems to answer in real-time.
Source: The Verge
Antibiotic Prescriptions Associated With COVID-19 Outpatient Visits Among Medicare Beneficiaries, April 2020 to April 2021
Outpatient Visits for COVID-19 and Associated Antibiotic Prescriptions Among Medicare Beneficiaries Aged 65 Years or Older, by Setting, US, April 2020 to April 2021. The volume of COVID-19 visits differed by setting: emergency department, 525 608 (45.8% of all visits); office, 295 983 (25.3%); telehealth, 260 261 (22.3%); and urgent care, 77 268 (6.6%).
Source: Journal of American Medical Association Network