Electronic case reporting (eCR) describes the process of automatically sending data on reportable conditions from the clinical provider to the public health authority. Traditionally, healthcare providers have submitted case reports for STIs using largely manual methods, such as faxing.  However, manual case report submission processes are burdensome for both the provider and for public health and allow many opportunities for data errors and unreported cases.

Much of the data needed for an individual case report exists in a patient’s electronic health record (EHR). Automating the building and sending of case reports directly from EHRs promises to reduce the burden of reporting while improving data accuracy, timeliness and completeness.

Guidance on using eCR for STIs

Together with CDC, PHII assembled guidance into the eCR for STIs Toolkit, an actionable set of resources that detail case detection logic and the core set of case report data elements for EHR-based electronic case reporting (eCR) of chlamydia and gonorrhea. The toolkit assimilates best practices as gathered from healthcare professionals, public health practitioners and informaticians to define how EHRs should help primary care providers automatically detect and report STI cases. 

The PACER pilot

PHII is also coordinating a pilot of the PACER (Public Health Automated Case Event Reporting) model, a system that augments electronic laboratory reporting using FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources). The collaborative body of pilot sites, which includes the Georgia Department of Public Health and the Houston Health Department, is implementing the PACER architecture in the public health and clinical setting to test how the FHIR-based querying capabilities can be used to improve data collection on STI cases, and ultimately aid in public health case investigation and follow-up of gonorrhea and chlamydia cases. This pilot builds on a proof-of-concept project with the Medical University of South Carolina.

eCR for STIs Toolkit

Access guidance for public health and healthcare on using electronic case reporting to improve timely case reporting of STIs.

Note: This work was conducted in support of Cooperative Agreement number 6-NU38OT000316, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Resource contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the CDC or the Department of Health and Human Services.

PHII is a program of the Task Force for Global Health, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was founded as the Task Force for Child Survival in 1984. The Task Force is affiliated with Emory University.