Epidemic Intelligence Service

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Beth E. Meyerson, Fred A. Martich and Gerald P. Naehr (2008). Ready to Go: The History and Contributions of U.S. Public Health Advisors. (Research Triangle Park: American Social Health Association).


Meyerson, B.E.; Martich F.A.; Naehr G.P. (2008). Ready to Go: The History and Contributions of U.S. Public Health Advisors. Research Triangle Park: American Social Health Association. yes


LANGMUIR, A D; ANDREWS J M (March 1952). "Biological warfare defense. 2. The Epidemic Intelligence Service of the Communicable Disease Center". American Journal of Public Health and the Nation's Health. 42 (3): 235–8. doi:10.2105/AJPH.42.3.235. PMC 1526024. PMID 14903237.


Schaffner, W; LaForce F M (October 1996). "Training field epidemiologists: Alexander D. Langmuir and the epidemic intelligence service". Am. J. Epidemiol. 144 (8 Suppl): S16–22. doi:10.1093/aje/144.Supplement_8.S16. PMID 8857837.


Thacker, S B; Goodman R A; Dicker R C (1990). "Training and service in public health practice, 1951-90--CDC's Epidemic Intelligence Service". Public Health Reports. 105 (6): 599–604. PMC 1580174. PMID 2175439.


Langmuir, A D (1980). "The Epidemic Intelligence Service of the Center for Disease Control". Public Health Reports. 95 (5): 470–7. PMC 1422746. PMID 6106957.


The Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) is a program of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Established in 1951 by Alexander Langmuir, it arose from biological warfare concerns relating to the Korean War. The modern EIS is a two-year, hands-on post-doctoral training program in epidemiology, with a focus on field work.


EIS officers attend an annual conference in Atlanta, Georgia, to present components of their work from the preceding year.During the conference, the Alexander D. Langmuir Prize is awarded "to a current officer or first-year alumnus of the EIS for the best scientific publication. The award consists of a $100 cash prize, an engraved paperweight, a case of ale or beer redolent of the John Snow Pub in London, and an inscription on the permanent plaque at CDC."A complete list of Langmuir Prize winners is included below:


In the 2011 film Contagion, the character Doctor Erin Mears (portrayed by Kate Winslet) is a physician and investigator with the Epidemic Intelligence Service who was tasked by the CDC to discover the origin of a highly contagious and deadly virus known as MEV-1 which was rapidly spreading throughout the world following initial outbreaks in Kowloon, Hong Kong and Minneapolis, Minnesota.


Thacker, S B; Dannenberg A L; Hamilton D H (December 2001). "Epidemic intelligence service of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: 50 years of training and service in applied epidemiology". Am. J. Epidemiol. 154 (11): 985–92. doi:10.1093/aje/154.11.985. PMID 11724713.


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Gerard Gallagher (2017). "CDC's EIS program molds clinicians into public health professionals." (Healio.com)


The EIS is operated by the CDC's Center for Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services (CSELS), in the Office of Public Health Scientific Services (OPHSS). Persons participating in the program, known colloquially as "disease detectives", are formally called "EIS officers" (or EIS fellows) by the CDC and have been dispatched to investigate hundreds of possible epidemics created by natural and artificial causes. Since 1951, more than 3,000 EIS officers have been involved in domestic and international response efforts, including the anthrax, hantavirus, West Nile virus in the United States, and the 2014–16 Ebola epidemic in West Africa.EIS officers begin their fellowship with a one-month training program at CDC headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia; however, 95% of their two-year term consists of experiential rather than classroom training. For the remainder of their service, EIS officers are assigned to operational branches within the CDC or at state and local health departments around the country. Placement is determined via a highly competitive matching process. The CDC pairs EIS officers with a Public Health Advisor or "PHA", forming a scientist (EIS officer) and operations (PHA) team. EIS is a common recruiting pathway into the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.The EIS is the prototype for Field Epidemiology Training Programs (FETP), which operate in numerous countries with technical assistance provided by the CDC.


Ostroff, S M (March 2001). "The Epidemic Intelligence Service in the United States". Euro Surveill. 6 (3): 34–6. doi:10.2807/esm.06.03.00216-en. PMID 11682711.


Since the inception of the EIS, officers have been involved with treatment, eradication, and disease-control efforts for a variety of medically related crises. Below is an abridged timeline of their work.