The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society honored the newest winners of its public-health excellence award in Atlanta this week.
HIMSS honors public-health award winners
The Electronic Surveillance System for the Early Notification of Community-Based Epidemics, Florida (ESSENCE-FL) and the Primary Care Information Project at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene are the recipients of the HIMSS Public Health Davies Award of Excellence, which recognizes organizations for "positively impacting population health by optimizing health information technology," according to a HIMSS news release.
There are four Davies award categories: public health, organizational, ambulatory and community health organization. Winners in the last three categories will be announced in September, according to HIMSS. The public-health winners were honored during the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Public Health Informatics 2011 Conference, which took place Aug. 21-24 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta.
ESSENCE-FL, operated through the Florida Health Department's epidemiology bureau, aggregates and analyzes data from hospitals and translates them into "information for action," according to the release. Epidemiologists across the state use the system to spot disease outbreaks and unusual trends in death, injury or illness.
New York's Primary Care Information Project aims to use health IT to improve care quality in underserved communities. The system has extended access to prevention-oriented electronic health-record systems to 541 independent small practices, 38 community health centers and three hospitals in underserved settings. Information gathered from the EHR network allows the health department to take a more data-driven approach in developing population-health programs, according to the release.
The Davies awards honor the late Nicholas Davies, an Atlanta physician, president-elect of the American College of Physicians and a member of the Institute of Medicine Committee on Improving the Patient Record who died in a plane crash in 1991.
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