Health Alert Network
The Health Alert Network (HAN) is a nationwide system for coordinating and distributing important information about public health events. It helps us strengthen our emergency preparedness at the local, state and federal levels.
In Nebraska we use the HAN to distribute health alerts, prevention guidelines and other information. We can notify health care providers, hospitals, and local health departments immediately by e-mail and fax. We also have a voice notification system to reach our state public health employees and health departments immediately. We can also share information with the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency, laboratories, pharmacies, veterinarians and other health agencies. The HAN can also be used for distance learning, national disease surveillance, and electronic laboratory reporting.
The federal Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) funds the HAN with grant money. Our goal is to improve the communications infrastructure for all Nebraska public health agencies and our partners. To help meet this goal, the HAN:
- Uses high-speed, secure Internet connections for local health officials and provides access to CDC's prevention recommendations, practice guidelines, and disease data.
- Creates a secure web site and emergency messaging system for communications among health agencies for bioterrorism and all other public health threats.
- Establishes a distance learning capability to foster greater public health organizational capacity and public health professional development.
Categories of Health Alert messages:
- Health Alert : conveys the highest level of importance; warrants immediate action or attention.
- Health Advisory : provides important information for a specific incident or situation; may not require immediate action.
- Health Update : provides updated information regarding an incident or situation; unlikely to require immediate action.