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Evaluating the Structure and Performance of Nordic Public Health Surveillance Systems: A Literature Review

Dempsey, Matthew (2023) Evaluating the Structure and Performance of Nordic Public Health Surveillance Systems: A Literature Review. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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This narrative literature review assesses the current practices and outcomes of public health surveillance systems in Nordic countries. In the United States, efforts to reorganize, modernize, and improve public health surveillance are ongoing in response to multiple public health emergencies. Therefore, it is important to examine and compare the practices of other countries and systems, particularly ones that have better health outcomes and different approaches to surveillance like in Nordic countries. This review presents several barriers to public health surveillance improvements in the US, such as old technological systems for reporting and decentralized data authority; this review further examines potential barriers in Nordic systems and how they were overcome. This study found that the Nordic countries rely primarily on public health registries for nearly all of their surveillance activities. These registries rely on personal identification numbers assigned to all residents, which link all their health and demographic data to national systems. Through careful data anonymization practices, privacy concerns have largely been eliminated and these systems are widely supported by the population. Nordic countries have also focused on modernizing their tech systems, automating reporting, and standardizing data collection. The literature shows that these practices create a system with large amounts of complete data that is quickly available to researchers and decision makers. Surveillance is a critical component of effective public health practice and research and when epidemiologists and decision-makers get data faster, lives are saved.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Dempsey, MatthewMAD447@pitt.eduMAD4470000-0002-8457-2545
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairCostacou, Tinacostacout@edc.pitt.educostacoutUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberSabik, Lindsaylsabik@pitt.edulsabikUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberPitts, Danagqo1@cdc.govUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date: 17 May 2023
Date Type: Completion
Number of Pages: 58
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Epidemiology
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 17 May 2023 14:44
Last Modified: 17 May 2023 14:44


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