Epidemiology Response Team Nurse
Texas Department of Family and Protective Services - San Antonio, TX

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Nurse III: Under the supervision of the Epidemiology Manager participates as a member of the Epidemiology Response Team (ERT) and may respond to a bioterrorism event, large-scale disease outbreak, or public health emergency anywhere in the state. Performs advanced, senior level public health nursing work. Participates in epidemiological investigations, studies, surveillance projects and case/contact investigations. Builds and maintains rapport and positive relationships with a wide variety of health care providers. Participates as part of a regional team to receive and respond to disease reports 24/7/365. Develops, maintains and implements protocols and standard operating guidelines. Assists the Director of Nursing and Regional Medical Director with the development of standing delegation orders for regional nurses and field staff. Serves as a consultant and advisor on epidemiologic nursing activities. Prepares curriculum and conducts in-services and educational training. Coordinates and performs nursing quality assurance. Serves as a member of a multi-disciplinary rapid response team during large-scale public health emergencies including natural disasters and bioterrorism events. Works under limited supervision with considerable latitude for the use of initiative and independent judgment.

Essential Job Functions:
(25%) Participates as a member of the Epidemiology Response Team (ERT) and may respond to a bioterrorism event, large-scale disease outbreak, or public health emergency anywhere in the state. Participates in epidemiological investigations, studies, surveillance projects and case/contact investigations. Abstracts, reviews and interprets medical information. Recommends measures for the prevention of and control of disease. Collects laboratory specimens, administers vaccine and medications. Reports cases to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention through the electronic entry of in the National Electronic Disease Surveillance System (NEDSS/NBS). Builds and maintains rapport and positive relationships with a wide variety of health care providers including: local health departments, infection control practitioners, physicians, laboratories, regional communicable disease staff, medical schools, veterinarians and other groups/individuals involved in public/private health care. Participates as part of a regional team to receive and respond to disease reports 24/7/365. Provides after-hours coverage of the communicable disease hotline on a rotating monthly schedule. (25%) Develops, maintains and implements protocols and standard operating guidelines pertaining to epidemiologic investigation, specimen collection/handling/shipping, infection control, and isolation & quarantine. Assists the Director of Nursing and Regional Medical Director with the development of standing delegation orders for regional nurses and field staff pertaining to epidemiologic case investigation and bioterrorism response. Conducts literature searches & evidence-based research and summarizes state-of-the-art data for presentation to the Regional Medical Director, Director of Nursing, Communicable Disease Program Manager and Epidemiology Manager. Maintains data for regional epidemiology progress reports, assessments and audits. Participates in regional all-hazards response planning and the implementation of bioterrorism preparedness and response activities. Participates in responding to legislative requests for programmatic information. Networks with local agencies and provides technical assistance to local and regional health departments, governmental agencies, private institutions, schools and hospitals. Serves as the regional liaison for infection control practitioners. (25%) Serves as a consultant and advisor on epidemiologic nursing activities for regional public health programs, local health departments, schools of public health, health care professionals, infection control professionals, and the public. Prepares curriculum and conducts in-services and educational training in surveillance, case investigation, infection control, disease prevention and bioterrorism preparedness and response for medical and public health professionals. Coordinates and performs nursing quality assurance as it relates to epidemiology and disease surveillance within the public health region. Conducts quarterly, county-specific assessment of case investigation forms submitted by regional nurses and field staff for accuracy, completeness, timeliness and appropriateness of control measures and makes recommendations regarding improvements. Designs needs-specific training to address areas of improvement. Reviews and revises educational presentations prepared by regional nurses and field staff for content accuracy and makes suggestions for improvement. Provides editorial assistance and offers supplemental content for regionally developed professional posters and presentations. Develops educational materials for the general public. (15%) Serves as a member of a multi-disciplinary rapid response team during large-scale public health emergencies including natural disasters and bioterrorism events. Assists Regional Medical Director with field clinic setup, management, quality assurance and infection control. Coordinates epidemiological, clinical, pharmaceutical and immunizations services for first responders and displaced individuals. Performs medical triage. Coordinates epidemiological surveillance of general population and medical special needs shelters. (10%) 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. 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. Complies with the Department of State Health Services Immunization Policy.

Knowledge Skills Abilities:
Knowledge of: Principles and methods of epidemiology and related biostatistics; Infectious disease epidemiology, signs, symptoms, and laboratory findings; Infection control practices and measures Texas Public Health laws, especially those that govern the control and reporting of notifiable conditions; Professional nursing theory, nursing processes, nursing sciences, and clinical skills; Principles and practice of public health nursing and health care management; Current social, economic and public health issues relevant to public health regions. Ability to: Collect and analyze statistical/epidemiological data and make recommendations; Present statistical and technical data in a clear and concise format; Communicate effectively both verbally and in writing; Organize and prioritize workload and meet deadlines; Establish and maintain effective working relationships; Work effectively with regional and local health department personnel, private practice physicians, hospital staff, media, and the general public; Exercise independent judgment in appraising situations; Provide transportation; Maintain confidentiality; Follow DSHS Principles, Standards of Conduct, Employee Ethics and Policy & Procedures. Skill in: Conducting community assessments; Utilizing computers and pertinent software including word processing, database, statistical and graphic software; Interpreting laboratory findings, physical signs/symptoms and information on medical charts; Developing a plan of action for resolving problems identified.

Registration or Licensure Requirements:
Current license to practice as a Registered Nurse in the State of Texas or a state that recognizes reciprocity through the Nurse Licensure Compact. Texas Class C driver license or equivalent from another state

Initial Selection Criteria:
License to practice as a registered nurse in Texas (Texas license or a license from a compact state). One year of nursing experience.

Additional Information:
Requisition ID# 221748 In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), HHS agencies will provide reasonable accommodation during the hiring and selection process for qualified individual s with a disability. If you need assistance completing the on-line application, contact the CAPPS service center at 1-888-894-4747. If you are contacted for an interview and need accommodation to participate in the interview process, please notify the person scheduling the interview.

Texas Department of Family and Protective Services - 21 months ago - save job - copy to clipboard