Pediatric Abusive Head Trauma: Recommended Definitions for Public Health Surveillance and Research
The mission of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is to create the expertise, information, and tools that people and communities need to protect their health – through health promotion, prevention of disease,<br>injury and disability, and preparedness for new health threats (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2010). Among the key objectives used to achieve this mission is working with national and international partners to<br>monitor health and detect and investigate health problems. Monitoring of population health is achieved through public health surveillance, defi ned as the ongoing and systematic collection, analysis, and interpretation of<br>outcome-specifi c data for use in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of public health practice (Thacker and Berkelman 1988). Public health surveillance relies on uniform case definitions and data elements that facilitate the collection of data useful for monitoring trends over time and characterizing persons at risk for health outcomes of interest among different subpopulations or geographic areas.