Northrop Grumman lands Del. health reporting work

Northrop Grumman Corp. has won a contract from the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services' public health division to direct installation and implementation of the Delaware Electronic Reporting Surveillance System.

Under the terms of the $3.6 million, one-year contract, Northrop Grumman will design and develop an integrated data repository for several public health information systems, using standards recommended by the National Electronic Disease Surveillance System developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

When the system is complete, public officials will be able to collect, integrate and analyze public health data to quickly identify trends in reported symptoms that might indicate a disease outbreak or a potential threat to the public.

The purpose of the reporting system "is to put in place a communication system to help safeguard the health and welfare of our citizens in case of a communicable disease outbreak or other threat to public health," said Leroy Hathcock, state epidemiologist. When it's fully operational, the system can reduce reporting time from as much as two weeks to as little as 24 hours, saving time between identification and investigation, he said.

According to Dave Zolet, vice president of homeland security at Northrop Grumman, the reporting system "is a good fit" with other Northrop Grumman disease surveillance programs. Those include the Syndromic Surveillance System and the Environmental Public Health Tracking Assessment projects under way in Montana, as well as projects it performs under a CDC information technology support contract.

The company is working with Information Builders Inc., New York, and Visual Risk Technologies Inc., Nashville, Tenn., on a customizable Web interface with personalized access for public health officials.

Based in Los Angeles, Northrop Grumman is a $25 billion defense company with approximately 120,000 employees and operations in all 50 states and in 25 countries. The company ranked No. 2 on the Washington Technology 2003 Top 100 list of federal prime contractors.


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