Saturday, June 2, 2012

meaningless or meaningful data collection

over the 32 plus years at the Stamford health Department, i have sought to make my data collection meaningful.
It has been used to shape policy, locally, statewide and nationally.
To me this was what data is for, to make observations, come to conclusions and make action.
Being in public health, i believe it has prevented some people from becoming ill.
We do work for many other entities and i had a conversation (via email) with one of theses the other day that made my hair stand on end.
It was concerning beach testing - they had not brought sample to me on a day they seemed to specify and i innocently asked why.  The following response was what i got:

"I had no intention of closing the beaches regardless of the test results, hence there was no reason to test. I am planning on sampling today."

This from a health Director who's job it is to protect the public's health.

I asked why test at all and the response was "that it was good data collection."

I can not say anything more to this
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