New Jersey ALS Surveillance Project

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Glossary of Terms

ALS

ALS or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis is often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease, after the NY Yankees baseball player. ALS is a disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord over time. Once these motor neurons die, the brain loses control of muscle movement. ALS is not curable. Visit the ATSDR Web site for more information about ALS.

ATSDR

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) is a sister agency of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Through an amendment to the Public Health Service Act, ATSDR has been given responsibility to develop the National ALS Registry.

Etiology

Etiology is the study of causation or origination. It is the study of why things occur.

HIPAA

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 includes the standards by which patients’ health information is kept protected. See our fact sheet for more information about HIPAA and patient consent.

Incidence

The number of newly diagnosed cases that arise in a population during a specific period of time, usually one year.

Prevalence

The total number of cases in a population at any given point in time.

Surveillance

The ongoing, systematic collection, analysis, and interpretation of health data essential to the planning, implementation, and evaluation of public health practice, closely integrated with the timely dissemination of these data to those who need to know. See our fact sheet for more information about HIPAA and patient consent.

THEY’RE COUNTING ON YOU TO COUNT THEM IN.