Additional Training Resources Now Available
As more users are added to the MEDSS system, new training resources have become available. There are now step-by-step directions on frequently used functions as well as short video demonstrations to assist with learning the system. The new videos and directions are part of a MEDSS training module which is part of the overall MEDSS website. These resources are available to all users, including physicians, local public health and other specialty groups. Users can choose a specific chapter or review all chapters, including searching and creating events, creating tasks, running reports, linking events, reviewing electronic lab reports, and interacting with your workflows. MEDSS Training Resources
Hearing Loss LPH to use MEDSS
Early Hearing Detection and Intervention program at MDH has decided to implement a MEDSS pilot program with their local public health to replace their current paper system starting this March. The EHDI Electronic Reporting System Pilot will involve several key counties who will be responsible to attend a 1-2 hour training, continue to report to MDH both by paper and electronically into MEDSS to assure data integrity, and to help make recommendations for improvements necessary to roll it out MEDSS statewide. EHDI will start the first rounds of training at their 2011 EHDI Summit at the Ramada Mall of America on March 7, 2011 with hopes for pilot to begin late March.
More groups start using MEDSS
More disease groups at MDH are starting to use the system for data entry, retrieving lab reports and investigation follow-up. The Vaccine Preventable Diseases (VPD) group, Vectorborne group and the Foodborne group have started to enter new cases into MEDSS as well as continue follow up on 2010 cases. More disease groups will be added soon as MEDSS continues to undergo development, including Pertussis, EIP, Lead and STD/HIV.
MEDSS ELR Goes Live
Electronic Laboratory Reports went live in MEDSS today for all of IDEPC at the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH). Epidemiologists looking for their lab reports will need to log in MEDSS, which replaced the existing LARS system. Electronic lab reporting involves a complex process of rewriting sensitive laboratory data from the MDH lab LIMS system into a format MEDSS can understand. The files are then transferred into MEDSS where users can view the attached lab report on the newly created disease events. The MEDSS ELR component supports electronic lab reports from the MDH lab as well as other larger lab facilities such as Mayo.
MEDSS at Minnesota Health Conferences
On September 26 MEDSS was at the Minnesota Chapter APIC conference at the Hilton Hotel in Bloomington, MN. In addition to a table demonstrating the system to attendees, Asa Schmit and Kathy Como-Sabetti presented information on the automatic case reporting process and results from the pilot study with Regions Hospital. MEDSS also had a table at the Community Health Conference from September 29 until October 1 in Brainerd, MN to inform county officials and Local Public Health directors about MEDSS and the progress of the implementation.
General Training Dates Announced
If you are currently working with MEDSS or will be in the next couple of months, MDH is offering two general training dates each month to help users navigate their way through the system. Each training session will last about three hours and will be located in the computer training room at the Freeman building. Below are the upcoming training dates:
- Thursday, October 21, from 1 – 4pm
- Wednesday, November 3, from 1 – 4pm
- Wednesday, November 17, from 1 – 4pm
- Wednesday, December 8, from 1 – 4pm
- Tuesday, December 21, from 1 – 4pm
New Training Dates for MEDSS
As development of the Minnesota Electronic Disease Surveillance System continues, more training for disease groups has been planned. Influenza students were trained in late August while the epidemiologists will be trained in early September to get ready for the upcoming Flu season starting October 1. Local public health officials are being trained throughout September for the pilot testing of TB Contact Investigations. New demonstrations are planned for the state field epidemiologists and metro area local public health in the next week. Students and epidemiologists working with foodborne diseases will be trained on MEDSS late in September. For more training information and access to the demo system, please visit the resources page.
Counties to Pilot Test MEDSS
Starting October 1, 2010, Hennepin, Dakota and Ramsey counties will begin a pilot test with the new Minnesota Electronic Disease Surveillance System for their TB contact cases. The goal of this pilot is to receive feedback from local public health on their needs for the surveillance system. MDH needs to know how well MEDSS targets the needs of LPH in their everyday duties with TB contact investigations and follow-up procedures. Much of this knowledge can be transferred among all disease events. Local public health has been collaborating on the MEDSS project with their involvement with the lead team.