Sykdomspulsen is an automatic infrastructure and a monitoring system that was scaled up at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic to include many data sources and deliveries. On 15 November 2022, Sykdompulsen was scaled down again, and some deliveries ceased following cutbacks at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.
Sykdomspulsen - current status
As of November 2022, Sykdompulsen is an automatic monitoring system and an infrastructure based on consultations at doctors' surgeries and emergency clinics throughout Norway.
Every time you consult a family doctor or emergency clinic, the doctor will note one or more diagnosis codes in your medical record. These data are sent to the Norwegian Directorate of Health (Hdir) as part of Control and payment of health reimbursements (KUHR). The data are anonymised and over 85 diagnosis codes are sent to the NIPH. The data are called Sykdompulsen KUHR data (sKUHR) when they arrive at NIPH.
sKUHR contains information at national, regional (county) and local (municipality) level. The data are important to gain an overview of the infection status in the country for the NIPH, municipal medical officers, county governors and infection control doctors, among others.
The data are used for monitoring COVID-19, influenza, other respiratory tract consultations and gastrointestinal consultations, and for research.
Surveillance of gastrointestinal and respiratory tract infections
You can follow the number of medical consultations for gastrointestinal infections and respiratory tract infections in the different counties (in Norwegian). The surveillance provides information about outbreaks and major changes in society, for example the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a decrease in the number of consultations.
Surveillance of influenza and COVID-19
You can follow the monitoring of influenza and covid-19 with, among other things, sKUHR data in the weekly report:
Sykdomspulsen helps to create the weekly report by providing analysed data, graphs and tables with sKUHR data for COVID-19 and influenza.
International research projects
You can read about two of the international research projects that Sykdompulsen is involved in and uses sKUHR data for:
This is a One Health project which is part of the EU's Horizon 2020. An article has also been published about Sykdompulsen's One Health monitoring and website, which was financed by the EU projects:
- A One Health real-time surveillance system for nowcasting Campylobacter gastrointestinal illness outbreaks, Norway, week 30 2010 to week 11 2022
A website was also created and financed by the EU projects. This provides a guide to how to create One Health websites:
Sykdomspulsen before downscaling November 2022
Below you will be able to read about the infrastructure that Sykdompulsen built up and what was delivered until the downscaling on 15 November 2022. Some of Sykdompulsen's infrastructure is still used in monitoring sKUHR data.
Sykdompulsen's deliveries were unfortunately de-prioritised in the downsizing NIPH had to carry out in the winter of 2022/2023, which led to Sykdompulsen losing more than half of its employees. As a result, much of Sykdompulsen's automatic infrastructure and deliveries ceased on 15 November 2022.
Sykdomspulsen - infrastructure for surveillance
Sykdomspulsen includes more than 15 data sources from the NIPH's own registries (for example Norwegian Surveillance System for Communicable Diseases (MSIS), MSIS lab, Cause of Death Registry (DÅR) and Norwegian Immunisation Registry (SYSVAK)), in addition to external sources such as KUHR data from the Norwegian Directorate of Health and data from the Norwegian Meteorological Institute.
Sykdomspulsen is also part of several EU projects:
Sykdomspulsen is automated so that reports and updates are completed early in the morning for user groups who need them, without the team having to work overnight.
Analyses and data
In our infrastructure, the data are cleaned, aggregated and various analyses are performed. Some of the analyses are advanced, such as regression analyses and threshold value analyses. Graphs, tables, maps and reports are produced. In addition, data are provided to update various publishing platforms, such as updating COVID-19 data:
- Daily report and statistics about coronavirus and COVID-19
- Data på GitHub
- Daily reports
COVID-19, influenza, other respiratory tract infections, gastrointestinal infections and mortality data are updated here:
- Sykdomspulsen for kommunehelsetjenesten (in Norwegian only)
The results are used by both internal groups at NIPH, but also external ones such as municipal medical officers, county governors, the major media houses and news channels, as well as institutions in other countries.
Sykdomspulsen for the municipal health service
In the Sykdomspulsen for the municipal health service portal, the municipal health service can keep track of the local, regional and national infection situation. The website provides information on, among other things, COVID-19, mortality, respiratory tract infections and gastrointestinal infections from sources such as MSIS, the MSIS lab database, SYSVAK, sKUHR, NiPaR and DÅR.