health data (Supphachai Salaeman/

CDC launches public-health analytics center

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced a new Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics, designed to advance the use of data in public-health decision-making.

The center will be an asset for public-health officials who need real-time, accurate information to mitigate the effects of disease threats, such as social and economic disruption. By bringing together next-generation public-health data, expert disease modelers, public health emergency responders and high-quality communications, the center will serve as a hub for innovation and research on disease modeling, CDC officials said.

With initial funding from the American Rescue Plan, the center will focus on disease prediction, data sharing and effective communications.

Through modeling and forecasting based on foundational data sources, the center will develop outbreak analytics to support real-time action and establish appropriate forecasting horizons.

The center also aims to expand data sharing and integration capabilities by using data standards, open source software and application programming interfaces to maximize interoperability with existing and new systems and data streams.

Finally, the center will emphasize effective communications by translating and communicating forecasts and connecting with key decision-makers across sectors.

With the new center, the CDC is addressing a critical the federal government’s critical need to improve its ability to forecast and model emerging health threats, expand collaboration through interoperability and boost emphasis on communication to the public and decision support for policy-makers.

“This is an amazing opportunity for CDC and public health as we stand up the country’s first government-wide public health forecasting center,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said. “We are excited to have the expertise and ability to model and forecast public health concerns and share information in real-time to activate governmental, private sector, and public actions in anticipation of threats both domestically and abroad.”

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