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Syndrome evaluation of individuals reporting emergency department utilization for notifiable disease and conditions


The Duval County Health Department (DCHD) serves a community of over one million people in Jacksonville, FL, USA. Each year, DCHD Epidemiology Program reports an average of 1133 (4-year average) notifiable diseases and conditions (NDC) with the exception of STD/HIV, TB, and viral hepatitis. Within Duval County, emergency medical care is provided by eight local hospitals, including one pediatric facility and a level-1 trauma center. These facilities contribute syndromic surveillance (SS) chief complaint (CC) data to the Electronic Surveillance System for Early Notification of Community-based Epidemics of Florida.

Historically, evaluations of SS systems have used ICD-9 diagnoses as the gold standard to determine predictive values. However, limited studies have surveyed reports of NDC to identify related emergency department (ED) visits and subsequent CC-based syndrome categorization. These data may provide public health investigators insight into health seeking behaviors, interpretation of SS signals, and prevalence of NDC within ED data.



This paper characterizes ED utilization among individuals diagnosed and reported with NDC. Furthermore, it evaluates the subsequent assignment of SS syndromes based on the patient’s CC during their ED visit.

Submitted by hparton on