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Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act review

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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) 639-5960 or send an e-mail to Send written comments to CDC Desk Officer, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, DC or by fax to (202) 395-5806. Written comments should be received within 30 days of this notice.

Proposed Project

Early Aberration Reporting System (EARS) Registration Module—New—National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID)(proposed), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Background and Brief Description

To support two of CDC's main priority areas: (1) Improving CDC's support for state and local health departments, and (2) strengthening surveillance and epidemiology, CDC is requesting approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to improve the Early Aberration Reporting System (EARS) by collecting data from individuals who request a download of EARS from the CDC Web site.

The Early Aberration Reporting System, developed within the Division of Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response, is a Web-enabled tool that analyzes public health surveillance data using methods that detect abnormal trends that could possibly indicate an outbreak of infectious disease. The local public health professionals manage the entire tool and can implement the defaults or can adjust the tool in order to meet their local needs. The goal of this process is to assist public health professionals in the early identification of outbreaks of disease as well as bioterrorism events. EARS is used to assess whether the current number of reported cases of an event is higher than usual.

The term syndromic surveillance is used to describe surveillance that uses health-related data that precede diagnosis and that signals a sufficient probability of a case or an outbreak of infectious disease to warrant further public health response. Syndromic surveillance systems are used by state, local, national and international health departments to monitor syndrome-based (e.g., case information collected in emergency departments (EDs) and diagnostic data sources for early detection of outbreaks and other public health events). More recently these systems are used during public health responses to provide more rapid near real-time situational awareness regarding the health status of the target population. EARS were the first software platform to support local syndromic surveillance systems. EARS has been designed and used to monitor syndromic data from emergency departments, 911 calls, physician office data, school and business absenteeism, over-the-counter drug sales, laboratory testing and results data and reportable disease surveillance systems. In the past several years, EARS systems have been integral in the local public health surveillance arsenal. EARS has been used at events such as the Beijing Summer Olympics; multiple Superbowls (football) and World Series (baseball); the political conventions of both major US political parties; and the Presidential Inauguration (2009).

Today, EARS is a highly successful and sustainable system and has over 200 users at the federal, state, local, and international levels. These users include international Ministries of Health and domestic state and local public health departments. Additionally, EARS detection methods have been integrated in well-known surveillance platforms such as BioSense at CDC, ESSENSE at Johns Hopkins, NAMRD at US Department of Defense, and Emergint at Northrop Grumman.

EARS is widely-accepted and easily sustainable due to its being free to all end users, the capacity to use multiple forms of data, flexibility and user-driven design and maintenance. EARS is a service provided by CDC as share-ware and is available by download at no cost from the CDC Web site​surveillance/​EARS.

In an effort to continue to improve and enhance EARS, the collection of registration information is needed to track users and organizations to assist in future needs assessments. Requiring the users to register will provide CDC with contact information (i.e., e-mail addresses) to use for broadcast e-mails regarding new releases for upgrades and enhancements; track the number of users, the download frequency, and the type of data that users will monitor with Start Printed Page 48350EARS; and solicit users for feedback for future upgrades and enhancements.

There is no cost to respondents to participate in this program. The total estimated annualized burden for this data collection is 25 hours.

Estimate of Annualized Burden Hours

RespondentsNumber of respondentsNumber of responses per respondentAverage burden per response (in hours)
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Dated: August 4, 2010.

Maryam I. Daneshvar,

Reports Clearance Officer, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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[FR Doc. 2010-19702 Filed 8-9-10; 8:45 am]