This document is intended to clarify the existing SARS-CoV-2 reporting requirements previously established on September 4, 2020, revised December 12, 2020, and revised again on January 20, 2022.
The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has been receiving electronic lab reports (ELR) for reportable lab results from a growing list of organizations for many years.
Critical access hospitals and hospitals.
Electronic lab reporting (ELR) is the automatic real time electronic data sharing of reportable (as required by state or local law) lab results to public health agencies. Nebraska utilizes the National Electronic Disease Surveillance System (NEDSS) quickly and securely and helps eliminate the need for manual reporting. ELR offers several advantages, including reduced administrative burden of reporting and improved timeliness, accuracy, and completeness of data. This real time exchange of information is critical during public health emergencies and to be compliant with state and federal requirements.
NEDSS is a web-based application used by state and local public health staff for communicable disease surveillance and case management. NEDSS can accept lab reports in a variety of formats (HL7 2.3.1 and HL7 2.5.1). It has the capability to receive submissions for testing and continued submission if the test is successful.
Public Health officials are then able to initiate disease investigations, identify contaminated foods or products, implement disease control measures to stop outbreaks, and to vaccinate/treat close contacts of a patient.
ELR is a collaborative effort between the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Council for State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE).
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