CDC launches disease forecasting center

Aug. 23, 2021

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) launched a new center designed to advance the use of forecasting and outbreak analytics in public health decision-making.

Once established, the Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics will bring together next-generation public health data, expert disease modelers, public health emergency responders, and high-quality communications, to meet the needs of decision-makers. The new center will accelerate access to and use of data for public health decision-makers who need information to mitigate the effects of disease threats, such as social and economic disruption. The center will prioritize equity and accessibility, while serving as a hub for innovation and research on disease modeling.

CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, MPH, said, “We are excited to have the expertise and ability to model and forecast public health concerns and share information in real-time to activate governmental, private sector, and public actions in anticipation of threats both domestically and abroad.”

The center, with initial funding from the American Rescue Plan, will focus on three key functions:

·        Modeling and forecasting; enhancing the ability to determine the foundational data sources needed; supporting research and innovation in outbreak analytics and science for real-time action; and establishing appropriate forecasting horizons.

·         Building data sharing and integration; maximizing interoperability with data standards and utilizing open-source software and application programming interface capabilities, with existing and new data streams from the public health ecosystem and beyond.

·         Translating and communicating forecasts; connecting with key decision-makers across sectors including government, businesses, and non-profits, along with individuals with strong intergovernmental affairs and communication capacity for action.

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