We made many of these enhancements in the early weeks of the pandemic, working with our state partners to identify and mitigate potential bottlenecks before they became a problem.
To enable Michigan health officials to determine how the virus was impacting different populations or parts of the state, we configured the system to capture demographic data including race, gender, pre-existing conditions (and other high-risk categories), and region. We also integrated data with the state-supported contract tracing application that exposed clusters of Covid-19 outbreaks and emerging cases of Covid variants that could be traced to specific jurisdictions.
We also enhanced the system’s reporting capabilities, which gave Michigan officials real-time access to information used to assess the situation and inform the response. As a result, Michigan’s electronic laboratory reporting capabilities received an A rating by the Covid Tracking Project.
To meet future challenges, and to apply lessons learned as Michigan’s partner during the pandemic, we’re embarking on a two-year modernization of the system. The new disease surveillance system will feature a microservices architecture that is scalable, configurable, and interoperable with more sophisticated monitoring, reporting, and analytics capabilities.
Benefits of the Modernized System
Our modernized disease surveillance system will provide several benefits to Michigan. First, the expanded reporting capabilities will enable the state to more easily and quickly share information among entities responding to a health crisis at the federal, state, and local levels.
Second, the reimagined user interface, powered by the scalability of a new microservices architecture, will feature data flows, dashboards, and visualizations that will give public health officials more tools to identify, track, and analyze trends with greater precision and speed.
And finally, the microservices architecture will ensure the system operates more efficiently by allocating resources only where needed and making it easier to release updates and new versions of the system, resulting in more control, more stability, and increased longevity.