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Table 1 Importance of Services Provided by Public Health Epidemiologists to Local Health Departments

From: Linking public health agencies and hospitals for improved emergency preparedness: North Carolina's public health epidemiologist program

Service Very important (%) Somewhat important (%) Not important (%)
Respond directly to LHD's requests for information needed from a patient's medical record for reporting or investigation purposes. 100.0 0.0 0.0
Report cases of CD at their hospital to LHD for patients that reside in county or health district. 99.2 0.8 0.0
Proactively inform LHD of unusual cases/clusters of CD at their hospital. 94.1 5.9 0.0
Facilitate LHD's access to physicians or others at their hospital who can provide information needed from a patient's medical record for reporting or investigation purposes. 94.1 5.9 0.0
Refer patients (or family members of patients) with a CD for follow-up services, as needed. 91.5 7.6 0.8
Pass on new or timely information from NCDPH, their hospital, and/or CDC regarding diseases of public health importance. 72.9 25.4 1.7
Conduct interviews with patients and/or their family members at LHD's request. 63.6 30.5 5.9
Provide regular reports on influenza cases at their hospital during flu season. 56.8 38.1 5.1
Meet regularly with LHD staff to review reportable cases, provide updates, and/or share information. 42.4 49.2 8.5
Meet with LHD's Epidemiology Team to review cases, provide updates, and/or share information. 36.4 50.8 12.7
  1. Abbreviations: LHD local health department; CD communicable disease; NCDPH North Carolina Division of Public Health; CDC Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.