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More About the Program

Description

Modern public health practice requires:

  • understanding of information technology
  • integrated, collaborative approach to problem solving

PHIFP is a 2-year, competency-based training program in public health informatics. The fellowship provides a problem-based learning environment in which fellows apply information and computer sciences and information technology to solve public health problems.

You will have the opportunity to:

  • learn about informatics and public health in an applied setting
  • work with teams involved in research and development of public health information systems
  • lead an informatics project
  • design, develop, implement, evaluate, and manage public health information systems

Training and Service

The program provides both classroom and on-the-job training. Additionally, PHIFP fellows provide informatics assistance to CDC and our public health partners.

What to Expect

The fellowship begins with an intensive orientation followed by real-world assignments and activities. Fellows work in a team environment and are mentored by public health and informatics experts.

Orientation

The orientation provides a background on CDC, public health, and public health informatics. The goal is to prepare you for your assignments and activities.

Required Activities

Fellows take a lead role in solving public health informatics problems. Activities include:

  • CDC assignments
  • Short-term assignments (InfoAids)
  • Final evaluation projects

CDC Assignments

These assignments are typically based at CDC. Travel, both domestic and international may be required. Examples include:

  • The Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) program supports a national network of aggregated environmental hazard, human exposure, and health outcomes data. A fellow developed an application ontology and co-designed a content management database. The result streamlined the input of new data sources and visualizations.
  • A fellow served as a principal investigator for a formative assessment examining the benefits of a Human Resource Information System implementation in a low-income country with a health worker shortage.
  • Kenya's Health Workforce Information System has been in place for several years, yet its positive impacts on planning and practice have not been formally documented. To identify and document impacts, a fellow led a team to review policy documents, interview senior officials at Kenya’s two Ministries of Health and four health professional regulatory bodies, and analyze data from the system.
  • The Laboratory Efficiency Initiative (LEI) supports State and Local Public Health Laboratories (PHLs) to maintain services during budget cuts. A fellow developed an assessment tool to help laboratories assess their informatics capabilities. The fellow also developed guidelines to help bridge the identified gaps.

Short-Term Assignments (InfoAids)

Fellows may provide short-term informatics assistance (InfoAids) to public health partners such as the state, local, and territorial health departments, international agencies and non-profit entities.

Examples of InfoAid activities include:

  • A fellow supported the trauma registry function of a state health department by developing a record linkage protocol for integrating various data sources such as the vehicle collision data, emergency transport, death records, and hospital trauma records.
  • A fellow assisted a federal public health agency by generating information required to support a proof of concept project to demonstrate capacity and utility of electronic health records in acquiring occupation health data.
  • A fellow supported the design of a public health preparedness dashboard for a state health department.

More Information

Contact:

Public Health Informatics Fellowship Program
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
1600 Clifton Rd., NE
Mailstop E-92
Atlanta, GA 30329-4027, USA
Phone: 404-498-6197
E-mail: phifp@cdc.gov

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