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Proposed Data Collections Submitted for Public Comment and Recommendations

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) publishes a list of information collection requests under review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35). To request a copy of these requests, call the CDC Reports Clearance Officer at (404) 498-1210. Send written comments to CDC, Desk Officer, Human Resources and Housing Branch, New Executive Office Building, Room 10235, Washington, DC 20503 or by fax to (202) 395-6974. Written comments should be received within 30 days of this notice.

Proposed Project: Weekly Morbidity and Mortality Reports and Annual Morbidity Series, OMB No. 0920-0007—Extension—Epidemiology Program Office (EPO), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).


In 1878, Congress authorized the U.S. Marine Hospital Service (later renamed the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) to collect morbidity reports on cholera, smallpox, plague, and yellow fever from U.S. consuls overseas; this information was to be used for instituting quarantine measures to prevent the introduction and spread of these diseases into the United States. In 1879, a specific Congressional appropriation was made for the collection and publication of reports of these notifiable diseases. Congress expanded the authority for weekly reporting and publication in 1893 to include data from state and municipal authorities throughout the United States. To increase the uniformity of the data, Congress enacted a law in 1902 directing the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service (PHS) to provide forms for the collection and compilation of data and for the publication of reports at the national level.

Reports on notifiable diseases were received from very few states and cities prior to 1900, but gradually more states submitted monthly and annual summaries. In 1912, state and territorial health authorities—in conjunction with PHS—recommended immediate telegraphic reports of five diseases and monthly reporting by letter of 10 additional diseases, but it was not until after 1925 that all states reported regularly. In 1942, the collection, compilation, and publication of morbidity statistics, under the direction of the Division of Sanitary Reports and Statistics, PHS, was transferred to the Division of Public Health Methods, PHS.

A PHS study in 1948 led to a revision of the morbidity reporting procedures, and in 1949 morbidity reporting activities were transferred to the National Office of Vital Statistics. Another committee in PHS presented a revised plan to the Association of State and Territorial Health Officers (ASTHO) at its meeting in Washington, DC, October 1950. ASTHO authorized a Conference of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) for the purpose of determining the diseases that should be reported by the states to PHS. Beginning in 1951, national meetings of CSTE were held every two years until 1974, then annually thereafter.

In 1961, responsibility for the collection of data on nationally notifiable diseases and deaths in 122 U.S. cities was transferred from the National Office of Vital Statistics to CDC. For 37 years the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) has consistently served as CDC premier communication channel for disease outbreaks and trends in health and health behavior. In collaboration with the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE), CDC has demonstrated the efficiency and effectiveness of computer transmission of data. The data collected electronically for publication in the MMWR provides information which CDC and State epidemiologists use to detail and more effectively interrupt outbreaks. Reporting also provides the timely information needed to measure and demonstrate the impact of changed immunization laws or a new therapeutic measure. Users of data include, but are not limited to, congressional offices, state and local health agencies, health care providers, and other health related groups. The dissemination of public health information is accomplished through the MMWR series of publications. The publications consist of the MMWR, the CDC Surveillance Summaries, the Recommendations and Reports, and the Annual Summary of Start Printed Page 8971Notifiable Diseases. The estimated annualized burden is 4927 hours.

Type of respondentsNumber of respondentsFrequency of responseAverage time per response (in hours)Annual hour burden (in hours)
Weekly Morbidity Report Respondent Burden
Territories5521@1 4@ 30/60156
CDC 43.5 Weekly Mortality Report Respondent Burden
City health officers or Vital statistics registrars1225212/601269
Annual Summary Respondent Burden
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Dated: February 18, 2004.

Alvin Hall,

Director, Management Analysis and Services Office, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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[FR Doc. 04-4230 Filed 2-25-04; 8:45 am]