States build on COVID lessons for monkeypox tracking

Orbon Alija/Getty Images

As case levels rise, states are reporting more demographic data.

State governments have been busy handling public health emergencies since the outbreak of COVID-19, and the spread of monkeypox infections has brought back statewide dashboards to track case information. 

In developing monkeypox dashboards, which record case numbers, vaccinations and demographic data just as many COVID-19 dashboards did, some agencies have drawn on lessons learned from previous dashboards to guide their efforts. 

The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) was able to create its monkeypox dashboard by building on processes used to track COVID-19 and the Ohio Disease Reporting System, public information officer Ken Gordon said. The ODRS is the state’s electronic disease surveillance system that follows reportable conditions across Ohio. 

“Using existing pathways and processes did make it easier to set up the monkeypox dashboard,” Gordon said. “It is important to note that with monkeypox, we are using the same processes for disease investigation and reporting that we have had in place for a long time.” 

The ODH is collecting data on cases, hospitalizations and any other elements required by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or are pertinent to the state’s investigation, Gordon said.

At first, ODH did not share details when case numbers were low to avoid identifying patients or violating medical privacy laws. Since the dashboard’s release in late August, however, Gordon said “case numbers now are at a point where we have been able to report locations on a county level on our dashboard.”

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment also leaned on its experience with COVID-19 tracking to build its monkeypox site, which was deployed in August. CDPHE is “taking advantage of many of the same workflows and visualization tools that we used to create and expand our COVID visualizations,” said Paul Galloway, marketing and communications manager.

Like Ohio, CDPHE limits exposure of identifiable information by not publicly reporting small case numbers in counties, unless they exceed three. The state only releases aggregated case and vaccine data as well as state-level demographic information such as sex and age ranges “to help us focus our response and resources to where and who has the greatest need,” Galloway said. 

The CDPHE relies on case interviews, vaccine clinics, patient health care providers, local public health agencies and labs that offer monkeypox testing to compile data on case numbers, age, county, gender identity, race and ethnicity, vaccine administration and distribution and whether individuals were hospitalized. 

Labs must alert the department of positive cases and vaccine providers submit immunization and vaccination data through the online Colorado Immunization Information System. 

The District of Columbia Department of Health also launched a monkeypox website last month. While it is “completely new,” the department learned from its successful COVID-19 system to ensure “data integrity and a timely weekly cadence.” 

Data is provided by commercial labs, hospitals and public health centers that submit vaccine, hospitalization and case information through “a secure disease surveillance and management system,” the department said. The reports are then analyzed by the epidemiology team.

Information is obtained from case interviews and electronic health records, according to the District's monkeypox data guide. Similar to Colorado, the district tracks monkeypox across age, gender identity, race and ethnicity, sexual orientation and ward. 

If there are fewer than five individuals reported, the dashboard will indicate that without providing specific figures in order to shield patient confidentiality. 

The CDC has watched and recorded monkeypox numbers since the start of the U.S. outbreak in Boston in May. The U.S. is recognized as having the highest recorded case numbers at more than 20,000 across all 50 states. 

This article was published first on GCN and GovExec, FederalSoup partner sites.

NEXT STORY: Getting things done in a bureaucracy

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.