WASHINGTON, D.C., Sept. 10, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society ( HIMSS ) today announced early results of a multi-year campaign to build a 21st century public health information superhighway. The campaign aims to drive federal investment over the next decade through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in order to transform today’s public health data systems into a state-of-the-art, secure and fully interoperable system.

HIMSS, Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL), Council of State and Territorial WHO: Epidemiologists (CSTE) and the National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems (NAPHSIS) are the founding members of the coalition behind the campaign. “Data: Elemental to Health” is a campaign aimed at transforming today’s public health data systems in order to improve disease surveillance and save lives. The campaign is seeking $1B in congressional funding over the next decade to modernize public health data/IT systems and develop a skilled workforce. In just six months, the campaign has achieved a number of early results, including: WHAT: -- House appropriations bill includes $100 million in fiscal 2020 for public health data systems and workforce modernization at CDC, state/local health departments -- House LIFT America Actauthorizes $100 million per year for five years for systems and people -- Senate Saving Lives Through Better Data Actauthorizes $100 million per year for five years for systems and people -- Senate Lower Health Care Costs Actauthorizes “such sums as may be necessary” over five years to modernize data systems WHEN: The coalition officially launched in February 2019. The data systems used by government public health agencies at the federal, state, local, tribal and WHY: territorial levels are out of date. Systems currently in use are in dire need of security upgrades and rely on obsolete data collection methods, leading to delayed detection and response to public health threats of all types, including measles, influenza, opioid overdoses, Zika and more. The coalition is driving support for the campaign in a number of ways, including by convening dozens of entities representing public health professionals, patients and consumers, health care providers, and IT HOW: developers; cultivating lawmakers to lead the charge; making the case to congressional and administration staff; appearing before the House appropriations subcommittee; hosting Hill briefings on the need to modernize; and organizing a Day of Digital Action.

WHERE: Members of the media who would like more information about the “Data: Elemental to Health” campaign can participate in an in-person press briefing on Wednesday, September 25th from 11:30 AM-12:15 PM ET at the W Hotel in Washington, DC. Interested media should contact kgroppe@himss.org by September 17th. Lunch will be served.

Media Contact:Karen Groppe kgroppe@himss.org

About HIMSS:

As a mission driven non-profit, HIMSS offers a unique depth and breadth of expertise in health innovation, public policy, workforce development, research and analytics to advise global leaders, stakeholders and influencers on best practices in health information and technology. Through our innovation companies, HIMSS delivers key insights, education and engaging events to healthcare providers, governments and market suppliers, ensuring they have the right information at the point of decision.

As an association, HIMSS encompasses more than 80,000 individual members and 650 corporate members. We partner with hundreds of providers, academic institutions and health services organizations on strategic initiatives that leverage innovative information and technology. Together, we work to improve health, access and the quality and cost-effectiveness of healthcare.

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, HIMSS serves the global health information and technology communities with focused operations across North America, Europe, United Kingdom, the Middle East and Asia Pacific.

© 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Commenting is limited to Omaha World-Herald subscribers. To sign up, click here.

If you're already a subscriber and need to activate your access or log in, click here.

Load comments

You must be a full digital subscriber to read this article You must be a digital subscriber to view this article.