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Data on the reported occurrence of notifiable diseases are routinely published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) and compiled in final form in this summary from annual reports submitted by the state and territorial departments of health. Data from the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands have been divided into two reporting areas for 1980-Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and Pacific Trust Territory (excluding CNMI), which includes six districtsMarshall, Palau, Ponape, Kosrae, Truk, and Yap. However, totals for the United States do not include data listed for Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, CNMI, and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.
CDC also maintains national surveillance programs for selected diseases, with the cooperation of state and local health departments, and publishes detailed epidemiologic analyses on a periodic basis. Data appearing in a surveillance report may not agree exactly with reports published in the MMWR because of differences in the timing of reports or because of refinements in case definition.
It should be noted that the MMWR and the national surveillance program are separate systems; data from each appear in this Annual Summary. These data should be interpreted with caution. Some diseases such as plague and rabies that cause severe clinical illness and are associated with serious consequences are probably reported quite accurately. However, diseases such as salmonellosis and mumps that are clinically mild and infrequently associated with serious consequences are less likely to be reported. Additionally, subclinical cases are seldom detected except in the course of special studies. The degree of completeness of reporting is also influenced by the diagnostic facilities available, the control measures in effect, and the interests and priorities of state and local officials responsible for disease control and surveillance. Finally, factors such as the introduction of new diagnostic tests (e.g., hepatitis B) and the discovery of new disease entities (e.g., infant botulism and legionellosis) may cause changes in disease reporting independent of the true incidence of disease. Despite these limitations the data in this report have proven to be useful in analyzing trends.
Mortality data, with the exception of statistics obtained from the 121 participating cities, are from the National Center for Health Statistics. Each year these data are also published in Vital Statistics of the United States, Vol. II.
Data on the notifiable diseases prior to 1960 were obtained from publications of the National Office of Vital Statistics.
The population data for 1980 used in computing rates are from the Bureau of the Census: Supplementary Reports, 1980 Census of Population, PC80-S1-1; Advance Reports, 1980 Census of Population and Housing, PHC80-V-34 (New York); Preliminary Reports, 1980 Census of Population and Housing, PHC80-P-54 (Guam); PHC80-P-53 (Puerto Rico); PHC80-P-55 (Virgin Islands); and press release CB81-97 (Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands). Population estimates for the years 1931-1969 were obtained from Series P-25, No. 802.
Population data from those states in which diseases were not notifiable or from which age-specific data were not available were excluded from rate calculation. Rates
were calculated using resident population data except for chancroid, gonorrhea, granuloma inguinale, lymphogranuloma venereum, and syphilis, for which only civilian resident population data were utilized.
Data on reported venereal disease cases were prepared by the Venereal Disease Control Division, CDC.
In order not to delay the publication of this document, provisional data from California were included. For further modification of any of those data, contact the California Department of Health Services.