The Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) is currently recruiting for an Executive Service Epidemiologist 2 position, with the Surveillance Systems and Informatics (SSI) Program, in the Communicable and Environmental Diseases and Emergency Preparedness (CEDEP) Division. This position will report directly to the SSI Program Director.
Within the CEDEP Division, surveillance is conducted for communicable and environmental diseases, including foodborne, healthcare-associated, vaccine- preventable, sexually-transmitted, and vectorborne/zoonotic diseases. The primary focus of this position is to support public health reporting (PHR), the process by which laboratories and healthcare providers report to public health when a patient has a suspected or known reportable disease, condition, or event.
- To support PHR, this position will provide technical assistance to reporters, and state and local public health, regarding reporting requirements. This position will coordinate the annual revision process for the reportable diseases, which involves collaboration across the CEDEP programs and with reporters as stakeholders. - This position will lead the implementation of electronic case reporting (eCR) for communicable diseases, which will involve developing an onboarding process for healthcare facilities to report via eCR and testing the eCR process with the communicable disease surveillance system. Implementing eCR will involve significant collaboration with the information technology (IT) team and the healthcare facilities to test sending standardized documents (the case reports) for public health reporting.
Additionally, this position will collaborate with the Emerging Infections Program (EIP) and CEDEP program staff to develop an informatics and IT strategy focused on how to share resources and streamline workflows. This position will coordinate meetings for the informatics/IT strategy, consolidate the surveys distributed by the CEDEP programs to laboratories, and consult on informatics issues.
Lastly, this position supports CEDEP and SSI projects and initiatives, participates in writing grant progress reports and narratives, and represents CEDEP on national calls with other jurisdictions and CDC.
Please note, this is not an applied epidemiology position. The purpose of this position and the SSI program is to support those who do through surveillance system and informatics work.
The ability to liaise among the public health professionals, information technology team, and reporters is essential to this role. As such, candidates should have strong oral and written communication skills, a positive attitude, and the desire to collaborate with internal and external partners. Potential candidates also should be detail-oriented and organized, self- directed, confident when managing projects, and able to think critically to solve systems-level problems. Responsibilities will require the ability to work independently, provide individualized customer service, and collaborate in a team environment.
Experience conducting active and passive public health surveillance for communicable diseases should include completing public health investigations following a report to public health, collecting additional information from healthcare providers or the patients themselves to apply case definitions, and utilizing a surveillance system to collect and manage the data. Implementing eCR will require an understanding of document standards, for which knowledge of Clinical Document Architecture (CDA) and Consolidated-CDA (C-CDA) will be helpful.
The technical skills for this position include competence in the use of statistical software, such as SAS, for extracting data from the surveillance system to support public health reporting, eCR, and the EIP.
Experience in informatics should include familiarity with standardized vocabulary, interoperability between systems, and a general understanding of how informatics supports public health surveillance.