Table 1

Potential uses of infectious disease surveillance data, by level of the public health system

Intended Uses

Used at which level(s) of the public health system?*


Identify individual cases or clusters in a jurisdiction to prompt intervention or prevention activities

Local, State (National)

Identify multi-state disease outbreaks or clusters.

State, National

Monitor trends to assess the public health impact of the condition under surveillance.

State, National (Local)

Demonstrate the need for public health intervention programs and resources, as well as allocate resources.

State, National (Local)

Monitor effectiveness of prevention, control, and intervention activities.

State, National (Local)

Formulate hypotheses for further study.

National (State)


*Public health system level in parentheses represents secondary use of the data for that purpose.

Jajosky and Groseclose BMC Public Health 2004 4:29   doi:10.1186/1471-2458-4-29

Open Data