CDC wants a cloud platform to centralize COVID-19 testing data

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As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the nation’s medical response to detect and track COVID-19 cases, it’s looking for a cloud platform that can better centralize data reported by testing facilities.

The CDC issued a request for information Tuesday looking for companies or organizations with “capability, proven past performance, and capacity to leverage a secure and scalable cloud-based platform to accept and transmit testing data from testing entities to relevant state and large local health departments, with a focus on multi-state, large regional, and state-wide reporting entities.”

The solicitation comes more than eight months into the coronavirus pandemic, as the Trump administration continues to receive criticism for obscuring or withholding data on the impacts and spread of COVID-19.

Currently, testing entities are “developing individual or using multiple reporting solutions” to share testing data, the CDC says in the posting, adding that more than 200 large entities have asked about the possibility of a more centralized option.

“COVID testing entities have communicated they are challenged by the reporting requirements to individual state, local, and county health departments. Some organizations stated they provide daily reporting of test results to over 70 public health departments, each differing in format and elements required,” the RFI says.

The centralized cloud solution the CDC is interested in would “ensure more complete reporting of testing data; help testing entities more efficiently report testing data, and; transmit these critical data to state and large local health departments promptly so that the health departments can plan and execute timely COVID-19 control and mitigation efforts,” it says in the RFI.

Meanwhile, the CDC’s parent agency the Department of Health and Human Services has similarly looked to cloud solutions to support other COVID-19 data aggregation efforts. HHS’s Protect platform pulls data from federal agencies, all 50 states, health care facilities and academia to track the spread of the virus.

And more recently, HHS has partnered with cloud provider Oracle to use digital identifiers to track the outcomes of people who have received COVID-19 treatment or therapies as part of clinical trials to determine their efficacy.

The CDC asks interested parties to submit a summary of what they can provide and a business model by Nov. 30.

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CDC, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Cloud, COVID-19, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
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