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Proposed Data Collections Submitted for Public Comment and Recommendations

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In compliance with the requirement of Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 for opportunity for public comment on proposed data collection projects, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will publish periodic summaries of proposed projects. To request more information on the proposed projects or to obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, call the CDC Reports Clearance Officer on (404)498-1210.

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Send comments to Seleda Perryman, CDC Assistant Reports Clearance Officer, 1600 Clifton Road, MS-E11, Atlanta, GA 30333 or send an e-mail to Written comments should be received within 60 days of this notice.

Proposed Project

State-based Evaluation of the Alert Notification Component of CDC's Epidemic Information Exchange (Epi-X) Secure Public Health Communications Start Printed Page 32356Network (OMB No. 0920—0636)—Extension Epidemiology Program Office (EPO), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Great attention has been focused on improving secure public health communications networks for the dissemination of critical disease outbreak and/or bioterrorism-related events, which may have multi-jurisdictional involvement and cause disease and death within a short time-frame. A central component of the mission of the CDC's Epidemiology Program Office (EPO) is to strengthen the nation's public health infrastructure by coordinating public health surveillance at CDC and providing domestic and international support through scientific communications and terrorism preparedness and emergency response. The Office of Scientific and Health Communication's Epidemic Information Exchange (Epi-X) provides CDC and its state and local partners and collaborators with a secure public health communications network intended for routine and emergent information exchange in a secure environment.

The purpose of the information gathered during this notification proficiency testing exercise is to evaluate the extent to which new registrants and currently authorized users of the Epidemic Information Exchange (Epi-X) are able to utilize alert notification functionality to minimize or prevent unnecessary injury or disease-related morbidity and mortality through the use of secure communications and rapid notification systems. In this case, notification alerts would be sent to targeted public health professionals through a “barrage” of office cell phone, home telephone, and pager calls to rapidly inform key health authorities from multidisciplinary backgrounds and multiple jurisdictions of evolving and critical public health information, and assist with the decision making process. Presently, the necessity of this evaluation process is timely because of ongoing terrorism threats and acts perpetrated worldwide.

The survey information will be gathered through an online questionnaire format, and help evaluate user comprehension and facility solely with the targeted notification and rapid alerting functionalities of Epi-X. The questionnaire will consist of both closed- and open-ended items, and will be administered through Zoomerang, an online questionnaire program, or as a last resort, by telephone. Approximately 6,000 Epi-X users from every state of the union will be asked to volunteer input (in a 5-10 question format) about their experiences using the alert notification functionalities of the Epi-X communications system. There will be no cost to respondents, whose participation will be strictly voluntary. The estimated annualized burden is 500 hours.

RespondentsNo. of respondentsNo. of responses per respondentAverage burden per response (in hrs)Total burden hours
State Epidemiologists and critical state public health emergency responders2000115/60500
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Dated: June 2, 2004.

Alvin Hall,

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

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[FR Doc. 04-13006 Filed 6-8-04; 8:45 am]