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Evaluation of Syndromic Surveillance for Opioid Overdose Reporting in Illinois


Accuracy in identifying drug-related emergency department admissions is critical to understanding local burden of disease and assessing effectiveness of drug abuse prevention and overdose-reduction initiatives. In 2018 the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) began implementation of a mandatory opioid overdose reporting law, applicable to all hospital emergency departments (ED). The mandate requires reporting of patient demographics, causal substance and antagonist ED administration within 48 hours of presentation. This reporting is not name-based. IDPH currently utilizes a near real-time syndromic surveillance (SyS) reporting system for all hospital ED, capturing most of the mandated criteria. Leveraging this existing system facilitates adherence to the mandate while imposing minimal additional burden of reporting on local hospitals. The Division of Patient Safety and Quality at IDPH has thus chosen to evaluate the completeness of overdose reporting and compliance with the opioid overdose mandate that have resulted from use of the current syndromic surveillance system.

Objective: To evaluate capacity of the BioSense ESSENCE platform and pre-defined overdose queries to identify emergency department admissions related to opioid overdose, in compliance with 2018 mandatory overdose reporting laws in Illinois.

Submitted by elamb on