- Texas Dept of State Health Services
- Austin, TX
- Job Category
- Full Time Positions
- $3,763.16 - $4,956.08/mo
- Last Date to Apply
- Job Description: Program Specialist IV Works in the Zoonosis Control Branch (ZCB) under supervision of the Epidemiology Team Supervisor with limited supervision and moderate latitude for use of initiative and independent judgement. Provides expertise and complex consultative support and technical assistance on zoonotic diseases to a wide range of internal and external stakeholders with emphasis on arboviral and other vector-borne diseases. Supports the ZCB epidemiologists in data management including document intake, quality assurance, data entry, filing, and compliance with retention schedule. Participates in planning, developing, and implementing policies, guidelines, and action plans to improve effectiveness and maximize the benefit of infectious disease data reporting. Collaborates within ZCB and with Regional ZC programs on data capturing and reporting issues. Evaluates disease data gathering and reporting processes and identifies gaps in resources; works with ZCB epidemiologists to develop action plans for improvement and initiates new procedures. Provides technical assistance for end-of-year data clean-up activities for the National Electronic Disease Surveillance System (NEDSS). In coordination with ZCB epidemiologists, communicates with regional and local health departments, laboratories, and other disease data providers for issues involving data reporting and management. Essential Job Functions: Attends work on a regular and predictable schedule in accordance with agency leave policy and performs other duties as assigned. Safe operation of either a state-owned vehicle or personal vehicle is required to conduct state business and an acceptable driving record must be maintained in accordance with DSHS Policy OS-3901, Fleet Operations and Management & Procedures and standards developed by the Texas Department of public Safety. (40%) Participates in planning, developing, and implementing statewide infectious disease surveillance systems for zoonotic diseases reportable to the state and the CDC with emphasis on arboviral and other vector-borne diseases. Monitors and evaluates disease reporting to identify data/reporting issues and participates in planning and facilitation of data remediation. Provides consultative services and technical assistance to local and regional health departments in implementing and/or performing disease surveillance. Identifies and participates in resolution of technical issues. Communicates verbally and in writing with laboratory partners, data submitters, and others. Reviews laboratory specimen forms, laboratory reports, and disease surveillance data, and performs appropriate quality control activities. Produces routine and ad hoc data reports. Monitors electronic laboratory report submissions for quality and timeliness. Assists in data analysis by preparing disease specific databases, providing technical assistance in analyzing data, and preparing summary reports. Supports/performs data migration as appropriate. Works with Branch staff to address open records requests. Collaborates with ZCB epidemiologists to develop policies and procedure manuals for correct data entry, for data quality assurance, and for records retention and management. (20%) Develops, receives, and distributes information, guidance, and surveillance data for arboviral and vector-borne diseases. Coordinates with ZCB epidemiologists, Regional Zoonosis Control personnel, local jurisdictions, and other DSHS programs to ensure necessary case investigation and laboratory testing data is collected for reporting to CDC through ArboNET and other disease surveillance systems including the Zoonosis Control Surveillance Database. (15%) Conducts data quality assurance. Coordinates resolution of duplicate, inconsistent and questionable records. Develops and implements procedures for timely resolution of duplicate records and questionable records. Coordinates with ZCB epidemiologists to investigate and resolve duplicate records and questionable records. Identifies and resolves user training or quality assurance issues which may result in data errors. Generates performance statistics and reports on duplicate and questionable record resolution processes. Monitors statistics of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) for consistency with state numbers. Investigates inconsistent reports and recommends and initiates appropriate changes. Provides information to ZCB epidemiologist to inform consultation with CDC staff regarding data reporting discrepancies. (10%) Monitors and evaluates the National Electronic Disease Surveillance System (NEDSS). Works with ZCB epidemiologists to provide feedback to NEDSS Office to resolve data related issues. Provides consultation on new data and reporting-related processes and procedures. Assists in the assessment of existing applications for functional improvements which improve data quality and ensure data integrity. (10%) Assists with quality improvement activities related to disease reporting and data management. Assists with development and implementation of data quality assurance protocols and tools in support disease surveillance program activities throughout the public health system at the state, regional, and local levels. Evaluates the effectiveness of quality improvement projects intended to improve data processing and quality. (5%) Other duties as assigned include but are not limited to actively participating and/or serving in a supporting role to meet the agency’s obligations for disaster response and/or recovery or Continuity of Operations (COOP) activation. Such participation may require an alternate shift pattern assignment and/or location. Knowledge Skills Abilities: •Knowledge of public health laws and regulations. •Knowledge of basic statistics. •Knowledge of electronic laboratory messaging and formats. •Knowledge of public health surveillance and medical terminology. •Knowledge of data quality procedures and methods. •Skill in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint). •Skill in data management and file organization. •Skill in working with various data formats. •Skill in planning and records management of complex data/databases. •Skill in analyzing and solving data and reporting problems. •Skill in data analysis. •Skill in application testing. •Ability to prioritize work assignments and meet deadlines in a fast-paced work environment •Ability to consult and provide information to a range of customers on human and animal notifiable conditions in a manner that represents a high level of customer service. •Ability to process information logically; exercise sound judgment; be resourceful; organize and complete assigned tasks with minimal supervision; establish and maintain effective working relationships. •Ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing. •Ability to present technical data in a clear and concise format. •Ability to work as a team member and to work effectively with regional and local health department personnel, laboratory personnel, private practice physicians, and hospital staff. Registration or Licensure Requirements: Must possess a valid Class C Texas driver’s license, or equivalent license from another state
- Initial Selection Criteria:
Preferred: A master’s degree (MPH, MSPH, or MS) with a focus in public health, epidemiology, or biostatistics and >= 2 years’ epidemiology or infectious disease investigation work experience in a public health agency; experience using Excel, Access and statistical analysis software
A bachelor’s degree in public health, biostatistics, or biological sciences supplemented with >= 4 years’ epidemiology or infectious disease investigation work experience in a public health agency; experience using Excel, Access and statistical analysis software
Note: The candidate hired into this position may be temporarily required to work remotely due to COVID-19 safety practices. Currently, agency-supplied teleworking equipment may not be available for new hires. To be considered for this position, the candidate must ensure they are able to comply with the necessary telework resources and equipment needs, which include:
• at home high-speed internet,
• personal laptop or desktop computer, and
• a designated workspace.
If you are unable to meet these requirements, please do not apply for this position but do consider employment with an HHS agency in the future.
Must be legally authorized to work in the U.S. without sponsorship.
An in-basket exercise will be required at the time of the interview.
The full salary range may not be offered due to budget limitations.
Note: Program Specialist IV (1573) has no direct military equivalent. Some duties are approximately those associated with Epidemiologist I (4082). Military occupation(s) that relate to the initial selection criteria and registration or licensure requirements for this position may include: 68S, 60C, HM, 230X, 4E0X1, 43HX, 43MX, 43EX. For more information see the Texas State Auditor’s Military Crosswalk at http://www.hr.sao.state.tx.us/Compensation/JobDescriptions.aspx
- Job Number