Director, GIS, Digital Information and Data Analytics
Jenna Messner arrived on-site in the Columbia, SC office of the SCDHEC and the Emergency Management Division (EMD) on February 17th, 2021. She began working with government stakeholders to coordinate data needs and data visualization between the agencies to baseline and kick-off this surge effort. She provided data coordination and data analytics support to research/refine requirements, design team structure and author a WBS for the path forward. Our initial primary responsibilities consisted of coordinating and facilitating data flow and processing efforts within SCDHEC to meet data standards set forth by the Governor and overseen by EMD. Daily updates of key performance metrics are reported on COVID-19 cases, vaccination allocations, vaccination distribution, vaccination transportation/storage logistics and vaccination administrations as well as other relative information such as financial data is provided to SCDHEC. In turn the EMD disseminates to all stakeholder agencies, including the U.S. Army National Guard, authorized healthcare providers, and public entities. Part of this transparency also ensures the general public’s access to this data, which requires our additional assistance with evaluation, communication, and outreach geared towards fostering their understanding and cooperation with vaccine distribution. Jenna participates in and leads IPT workgroup meetings between SCDHEC’s Immunization Branch members and the Data Analytics Team (DAT) to discuss data input system discrepancies, reconciliation tactics and accurate reporting of data estimates per the Governor’s requests for information. A large part of this effort is working to streamline existing workflows and improve communication between SCDHEC personnel tasked with managing the data. This strongly relies on our ability to coordinate with stakeholders contributing to all stages in the data collection, extraction, refinement and reporting process, including those at varying tiers of authority within the agency and administration. Our unique IPT approach identified the need for us to scale support and deploy additional resources to SC. We currently have a total five team members on site and an additional 12 team members supporting remotely. To do this successfully, we have proactively initiated discussions between outwardly separate entities handling the same data outputs, to ensure reportability can be as accurate as possible and replicable. In addition, Jenna has responded directly to evolving needs for additional data support, by providing feasible recommendations for potential staffing solutions and technical requirements to meet those needs. This includes providing other data support services, problem-solving, and further technical solution-design as needed.