Public Health Surveillance Paper

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Syndromic surveillance approaches could be utilized to track the burden of chronic illnesses such as heart disease and mental illness. Data collection and analysis would be a useful tool for tracking risk factors and trends of population health. The resulting data may be used to enhance public health prevention strategies or disease management and may also provide further identification of risk factors. According to Choi (2012) surveillance is considered to be an essential function the of public health system. The author quotes the 2001 definition of public health surveillance from the Center for Disease Control noting “public health surveillance is the ongoing, systematic collection, analysis, interpretation, and dissemination of data regarding a health-related event for use in public health action to reduce morbidity and mortality and to improve health” (Historical Development of the Concepts and Definitions of Public Health Surveillance, table 5). This definition summarizes the process of disease surveillance and its …show more content…
2. Searching online social media sources to find disease surveillance data may result in discovery of useful information but it may also be unethical and possibly illegal. It is not unusual for individuals to use social media to express challenges they are facing when they themselves or loved ones are experiencing symptoms of illness. People may post information in hopes to learn how to treat symptoms without visiting a medical professional, or they may want to inform others of their illness. Author Hanrahan (2013) notes that while social media may be viewed publically, the systematic acquisition of personal health information by public health officials should consider law as well as ethical principles. Key considerations include violation of individual liberty, privacy, property, and autonomy. Public health authorities must also protect the population and therefore ensure health and safety of the greater

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