Onboarding is a collaborative process in which the National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP) and site teams work with a facility, health department, electronic health records (EHR) vendor, or health information exchange (HIE) to transmit syndromic data from medical record systems to the NSSP BioSense Platform.

The “NEW SITE PLANNING” job aid will guide the site administrator through the activities that must be completed before submitting a Service Desk ticket to start the onboarding process. This job aid will prove useful for a new site scheduled for or being considered for onboarding.

Job aids are available for planning and onboarding. Use these job aids with each other and the New Site Onboarding Guide for the BioSense Platformpdf icon, hereafter referred to as Onboarding Guide.

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Steps for New Site Planning (Pre-Onboarding)
Steps for New Site Planning (Pre-Onboarding)

STEP 1: Request new site onboarding participation at Wait for a reply from the NSSP onboarding team. NSSP will:

  • Assess request for prioritization,
  • Send out official New Site Onboarding Invitation to interested sites,
  • Propose an onboarding window with scheduled milestones, and
  • Schedule kick-off call to initiate the onboarding window.

STEP 2: Identify your team (Onboarding Guide, Section 3.4, Site Roles and Responsibilities):

  • Onboarding coordinator
  • Site administrator(s)
  • Feed administrator to establish feed connectivity
  • Technical contact to develop HL7 messages
  • Epidemiologist

Some duties may overlap. Duties may be performed by multiple organizations.

STEP 3: Review training and resources:

STEP 4: Check with your organization to find out if HL7 data integration tools (e.g., Rhapsody and Mirth) are available. Both have SFTP capabilities and can be configured for data uploads.

STEP 5: Develop 30+ days of HL7 files (Onboarding Guide, 3.2 Prerequisites) and confirm HL7 messages meet PHIN Messaging Guide for Syndromic Surveillance and NIST standardsexternal icon.

STEP 6: Identify and engage with high-priority facilities to onboard.

STEP 7: Establish optional service-level agreements as needed and submit to NSSP Service Desk:

  • Data Use Agreement (DUA) with NSSP (contact Service Desk for template);
  • BioSense Onboarding Process Site Acknowledgement (Onboarding Guide, Appendix A, Site BOPA);
  • Downstream DUA (Onboarding Guide, 3.2 Prerequisites); and
  • Facility BOPA (Onboarding Guide, Appendix B).

STEP 8: Plan for data sharing and intra-site access (Onboarding Guide, 3.8 Data Sharing and Intra-Site Access).

  • What adjacent or other sites are your site facilities likely to share data with (intra-site access)?
  • What data will be shared? Who, specifically, will share data?
  • Data sharing through Chief Complaint Query Validation tool (CCQV).
Page last reviewed: September 23, 2021