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Press Release

For Immediate Release: December 21, 1999
Contact: CDC Media Relations (404) 639-3286

Fact Sheet: Monitoring Public Health and Internal Systems During the Millennium Roll-Over Period December 1999-January 2000

  • CDC staff will be on duty through the New Year's weekend to ensure our systems operate normally. During the weekend, CDC will conduct a preliminary assessment of its mission critical systems, information technology infrastructure, and buildings and facilities. This preliminary testing and analysis will include a thorough check of the high containment laboratories to ensure our rigorous safety and security standards are maintained during the transition and continue to operate normally. CDC will continue to monitor systems for Y2K effects through the early part of the Year 2000.
  • CDC is also monitoring the Nation's public health infrastructure through State and Territorial Health Departments to ensure that all essential public health functions such as disease monitoring and outbreak detection programs continue to operate effectively and timely.
  • CDC will pass key information to the HHS Coordination Center on a continuing basis and in turn, the President's Council for Year 2000 Conversion Information Coordination Center (ICC) which will provide a national assessment of the Y2K rollover. All information about the status of CDC and other Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) agencies can be found at the HHS website or at the President's Council for Y2K Conversion website. While CDC expects to have some preliminary information on January 1st, many reports will not be available until the workweek begins or later in the week.
  • CDC's primary high impact federal program is public health disease surveillance and outbreak detection. Infectious disease surveillance is conducted in partnership with State and Territorial health agencies and various healthcare providers. CDC will be testing these systems during the millennium weekend in concert with public health partners. The three most time-sensitive public health disease surveillance systems are:
    • Public Health Laboratory Information System is an electronic system for reporting laboratory testing results of certain infectious diseases to the CDC. This system provides surveillance of certain diseases and helps to detect unusual clusters of disease. It is used all 50 state health departments, New York City, the District of Columbia, and Guam.
    • PulseNet, National Molecular Subtyping Network for Foodborne Disease Surveillance, is used for rapid comparison of DNA patterns (pulsed-field gel electrophoresis) of pathogens for outbreak detection. It is used by State public health laboratories, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
    • Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System is used to electronically collect adverse reaction to immunizations data from healthcare providers. It is used by healthcare providers, state public health agencies, and FDA.


  • To check the national status of Y2K conversion:
  • To check the status of Y2K conversion for DHHS agencies:
  • CDC/ATSDR Y2K Plans and Historical Information:
  • For updates on CDC/ATSDR Y2K transition:


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