Executive Director Report - Shawna Webster
Happy New Year to all! It’s planning season here at HQ, so I’d like to give you all a preview of the work we’ll be focusing on in 2021.
First, let me go ahead and say for the record that while we all desperately want to see you all in person, we have decided to forego any plans for in-person meetings this year. We still plan to travel to Omaha next year, and hopefully Boise the year after that, but for this year, we will concentrate on providing more virtual events without the expense and time commitment of large/long conferences. By popular demand, we will hold several more regional meetings online, offer targeted, meaningful skills training, and discussions/trainings on specific hot topics as well. And while we won’t have anything as “official” or grand as an “Annual Meeting,” we will hold elections this spring and our Business Meeting this summer.
Our programmatic activities with NCHS and other partners at CDC will expand this year to include work with a new program at CDC. This is especially important on the advocacy front, as we continue to work with CSTE, APHL, HIMSS and others on the Data: Elemental to Public Health (ie, the Data Modernization Initiatives) with CDC and the new administration. While this is a small project financially, it will mean stronger ties with our partners and expanded use and functionality of our STEVE system.
Speaking of STEVE, we will be conducting some strategic planning and business plan development activities around our electronic systems this year. This is something that has been on our “to do” list for a few years now, and given the growing interest in STEVE at CDC, the Data Modernization initiatives, and the uncertainty about what will happen with the expansion of Section 205r of the Social Security Administration Act, we can put it off no longer!
Internally, we are going to start exploring ways to streamline and consolidate our contracts with the member jurisdictions. We believe the work we’ll do around systems planning this year will help inform this process, and help us come up with a workable, marketable solution to our ongoing challenges around data sharing. We’ll also be looking at some updates to our Association Bylaws this year, electing a new President-Elect, and doing a thorough review of the organization’s policy structure.
There are a number of large question marks looming over the organization this year – what will happen with the expansion of 205r and how fast will SSA want to begin work? How will that affect our EVVE systems? When will the other $450 Million in the CARES Supplemental for Data Modernization be allocated – and what part of that will go to Vitals? How will immunization tracking projects affect digital identity and the electronic health record? How long will our COVID recovery path be?
All of these questions – and more – loom large over our planning process this year. It is our goal to be ready to respond to whatever comes next – but meanwhile – we will continue to provide you with timely member benefits and services to help see you through the challenges of 2021. Whatever they may be!
Upcoming Webinars and Events
Wednesday, February 10 @ 2pm ET
VSCP Project Directors Webinar
Tuesday, February 23 @ 3pm ET
Field Services Special Interest Group
Email us to join.
Thursday, February 25 @ 3pm ET
Systems Special Interest Group
Email us to join.
Monday, March 8 @ 1pm ET
Strategies to Improve Mortality Data Quality Webinar
March 15 - March 17
Vital Records and Their Administration Course
For any questions about NAPHSIS Events, please email Katey Frederking.
Radon Awareness Week
In recognition of Radon Action Month, CDC sponsored its first Radon Awareness Week January 25th – 29th, 2021. The week’s theme Protect Yourself and Your Loved Ones from Radon focuses on the need to increase the public’s awareness about radon as a potential public health concern.
CDC’s Radiation Studies Program, in collaboration with CDC’s Environmental Public Health Tracking Program and Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, will highlight messages on understanding what radon is, the importance of testing homes to determine if there is a high level of radon, and steps to take to reduce radon levels in homes.
For more information about Radon Awareness Week, please click here.
New York City Bureau of Vital Statistics Job Opening
NYC is seeking a recent MPH graduate for a NEW ROLE, a Vital Event Registration Scientist, to study operations and work to continuously improve the processes employed to manage vital records. The Bureau of Vital Statistics (BVS) registers, amends, processes, and analyzes all vital events in New York City while also issuing certified copies of certificates to the public. Vital events include births, death, and spontaneous and induced terminations of pregnancy. The Bureau of Vital Statistics (BVS) is required to provide a publicly available electronic system, to collect and register the reported incidence of births and deaths that occur in New York City (NYC). In 2017 there were over 117,000 births, 54,000 deaths reported.
To learn more and/or apply, click here.
Texas Department of State Health Job Opening
Texas Department of State Health Services Job Opening: Vital Records Branch Manager. This is a unique, fast-paced job in a hybrid business-government environment. The person who fills this role will make a difference in Texans’ lives. The role is responsible for making sure Texans have accurate, certified copies of vital records when they need them. Vital records help Texans secure critical government and medical services.
This role is a great opportunity if you want to run a high-volume e-commerce operation in public service.
To learn more and apply, click here.