The NH Health Alert Network (NH HAN) is a 24/7/365 comprehensive system for public health emergency notifications and alerts in response to events or incidents of public health significance. It includes a network of individuals and the software and hardware needed to create messages and respond to communications around public health incidents.
The NH-HAN ensures that public health professionals and key response partners can exchange health related information. It provides the situational awareness necessary to respond to events that may have urgent public health consequences. HAN messages are sent through New Hampshire's primary communication alerting system called the Communicator!NXT which rapidly pushes out health alerts via telephone, text message, fax, e-mail and pager. Participants include physicians, nurses, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, hospital emergency departments, local health departments, local public health responders, public health volunteers, health officers, etc.
Enrollment in the NH-HAN is open to individuals who meet at least one of the following criteria:
- The recipient has a legal obligation to respond to a public health incident.
- A public health incident is occurring in the recipient's jurisdictional area.
- The recipient's participation is essential for completing a public health intervention.
On June 28, 2013, the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services announced a new partnership with Medscape that will enhance communication efforts of urgent public health messages to New Hampshire's health care professionals. "This partnership complements our current Heath Alert Network system and will allow us to heighten our efforts and reach additional New Hampshire health care professionals in a timely manner," said Dr. José Montero, Public Health Director at DHHS. "Medscape is the leading source of news and health information for healthcare providers," said Robert Marotta, Senior Vice President & Chief Regulatory Counsel of WebMD. "We will work alongside the New Hampshire State Department of Health on both a state and local level to enhance existing channels of communication to physicians and swiftly and effectively reach healthcare providers with urgent health information when needed."
The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health Services was awarded Public Health Information Network (PHIN) Certification in Direct Alerting on June 11, 2009. Achieving this certification demonstrates New Hampshire’s commitment to implement PHIN standards and practices that improve its overall capacity to exchange electronic public health information across jurisdictional lines—a benefit during both emergency and day-to-day operations. For more information on receiving Health Alerts, contact the NH HAN Coordinator at Health.Alert@nh.gov.