Building State Capacity for Development and Utilization of Viral Hepatitis Epidemiologic Profiles

Wednesday, June 25, 2014: 7:15 AM
Belmont II, Renaissance Hotel
Elizabeth Ruebush , Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, Arlington, VA
Catherine Cairns , Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, Arlington, VA

Brief Summary:
State health agencies play a critical role in viral hepatitis surveillance to identify populations at high risk for new transmissions, while also highlighting groups at most immediate risk for disease progression.  Health agencies can support a comprehensive approach to surveillance activities by developing viral hepatitis epidemiologic profiles to document, interpret, and frame the dimensions of hepatitis B and C epidemics in local terms.  Epidemiologic profiles can be used to heighten awareness and drive decision making, serving as a catalyst for action around policies and programs at the state and local levels. In an effort to build capacity in this area, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are working with three states to develop and utilize viral hepatitis epidemiologic profiles (using HIV epidemiologic profiles as a model).  The goal of this work is to support states in identifying, analyzing, and interpreting routine and novel sources of data, and to assist in the development of an epidemiologic profile that can be used to help states 1) determine where to target limited resources; 2) generate materials for use in professional development and public awareness; and 3) create momentum for policy development.  During the roundtable, ASTHO and state representatives will provide an overview of the methodology used in developing the viral hepatitis epidemiologic profiles and utilization plans, and will share lessons learned.  Participants will be invited to share examples from their jurisdictions of efforts underway to use data to communicate about viral hepatitis, suggest measures to evaluate impact of the epidemiologic profile effort, and consider strategies for leveraging routine and novel data sources to tell the story of viral hepatitis in local terms.