COVID-19 Response

New - National ELR Flat File and HL7 Generator Tool Package

In collaboration with CSTE member input, the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) has developed the National ELR Flat File and HL7 Generator Tool. The National ELR Flat File is a standardized CSV file format that public health agencies (PHAs) may use in their outreach to labs as a mechanism to more quickly receive lab data from facilities that are not currently sending results through electronic laboratory reporting (ELR). The HL7 Generator is a tool based in Microsoft Excel that PHAs can use to generate an HL7 V2.5.1 ELR R1 specification-based data output file for COVID-19 test results that is compliant with all data format and value constraints imposed by CDC and HHS.

The linked file package contains additional information, instructions, and the tool components.

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)  After Hours/EPI-On-Call

On January 22, 2020, CSTE activated its Concept of Operations (ConOps) Plan for emergency response in response to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (COVID-19, formerly 2019-nCoV). To date, CSTE has convened numerous conference calls and webinars with CDC, CSTE members, and other national public health non-profit organizations to facilitate federal and STLT coordination on the epidemiological response and has assisted with technical assistance needs, bidirectional communications, and information and resource sharing. CSTE has convened ad-hoc weekly Novel Coronavirus Response All State Epi calls to discuss emerging issues and response-related needsamong other activitiesThe COVID-19 response is ongoing and the CSTE National Office is currently activated at level 4, the highest level of activation with a full Incident Command Structure. Please direct any COVID-19 response-related inquiries to CSTEcovid-19@cste.org or call the after-hours line at (678-256-3945.  

CSTE National Office COVID-19 response activities are outlined below:   

  • Convene a core group of epidemiologists to provide rapid feedback on CDC data collection tools and guidance documents via ad hoc conference calls and email   
  • Host weekly COVID-19 All State Epi calls to discuss emerging issues and response-related needs   
  • Host recurring CDC/APHL/CSTE COVID-19 calls to better coordinate the epidemiological and laboratory response   
  • Participate in weekly leadership strategy calls with CDC’s State Coordination Task Force, ASTHO, NACCHO, and APHL   
  • Participate in weekly coordination calls with CDC’s COVID-19 liaison to CDC and APHL   
  • Host an ad hoc webinar demonstrations on monitoring systems for COVID-19 persons under investigation (PUIs)   
  • Facilitate rapid bidirectional communications between CDC IMS response and CSTE members by sharing information, resources and guidance documents with a multitude of audiences, including State Epidemiologists, Deputy State Epidemiologists, City and Large Urban Area Epidemiologists (CLUE), CSTE Executive Board, relevant CSTE Points of Contact (such as CSTE’s Infectious Disease and Surveillance and Informatics POCs), and relevant CSTE Subcommittees (such as Influenza and Viral Respiratory Diseases Subcommittee, HAI Subcommittee, Public Health Law Subcommittee, Border/International Health Subcommittee, Surveillance Policy Subcommittee, and the NSSP Community of Practice) 

Public Health Professionals:

 For COVID-19 inquiries, please contact the CSTE National Office, Monday-Friday, 8:00 am-4:30 pm ET at (770) 458-3811, or call the after-hours line at (678) 256-3945. You may also email the response mailbox at CSTEcovid-19@cste.org.