Office of Epidemiology

Columbus Public Health
240 Parsons Ave.
Columbus, Ohio 43215

8:30 am – 5:00 pm
Mon – Fri

Kathy Cowen, M.S., Director
(614) 645-6252
[email protected]

What is Epidemiology?

The Study of Epidemiology

Epidemiology is the study of how diseases spread and can be controlled in the population. In medicine, the patient is the individual, but in epidemiology, the patient is the entire community. By studying the distribution (frequency and pattern of spread) and determinants (causes and risk factors) of health-related states in the community, resources can be properly allocated to control health problems and improve the health of the community overall. 

Epidemiology at Columbus Public Health

The Office of Epidemiology is a section in the Population Health Division.  Our staff works to help improve the health of the Columbus community through gathering and analyzing health-related data and information. Our office accomplishes this through:

  • Community Health Assessment The community health assessment data informs community decision-making, the prioritization of health problems, and the development, implementation, and evaluation of community health improvement plans.
  • Public Health Surveillance In conjunction with other internal and external public health partners, the Office of Epidemiology uses epidemiological techniques to monitor, identify, investigate and report on emerging health threats, including opiates, extreme heat, flu, sexually transmitted infections, and Zika. 
  • Data and Analysis The Office of Epidemiology provides data and analysis support to internal and external partners for program planning and grant funding efforts related to Maternal and Child Health, Chronic Disease, Injury Prevention, Infectious Disease, Health Equity and other topics.