The Emerging Infections Program (EIP) is a national network that conducts enhanced public health surveillance and applied public health research. The Maryland Emerging Infections Program (MD EIP) is a working partnership among Maryland’s state health department (the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene), the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH), and the University of Maryland School of Public Health (UMSPH). Maryland became a national EIP network member site in 1997, and over the ensuing twenty years, has developed into a mature partnership capable of performing active, laboratory-based surveillance using defined surveillance populations; conducting applied public health epidemiologic and laboratory activities; and implementing and evaluating pilot prevention and intervention projects. The MD EIP is also capable of rapidly responding to emerging infectious disease threats, as was demonstrated during the 2009-2010 pandemic influenza season.
The MD EIP proposes to continue its collaboration with CDC, other federal partners, and other EIP sites to assess the public health impact of, and respond to, emerging infections. Specifically, the MD EIP will continue to participate in the Active Bacterial Core surveillance (ABCs), the Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet), the Healthcare-Associated Infections – Community Interface (HAIC) projects, the Influenza Surveillance Network (FluSurvNet), and the Lyme and Other Tickborne Diseases (TickNet) activities. With few exceptions, the surveillance area for each of these activities will be the entire State. The MD EIP will continue to enhance its capacity to quickly respond to newly emerging infectious disease issues by continuing to cross-train EIP staff and strengthening relationships with other partners (e.g. public health preparedness and response). A variety of training opportunities will also be provided for infection control professionals, laboratory scientists, local health department staff, medical residents, and public health graduate students.