Covid19 Experience

At the start of 2020, and with the Covid epidemic sweeping across Ireland, the Integrated Information Service, or IIS, rapidly stood up a multidisciplinary data driven team. The IIS is fortunate to have highly skilled, diverse and well educated people working as part of its team. Its members come from both private and public sectors as well as academia and have a broad cross section of experience in areas that include Data Engineering, Data Analysis, Data Visualisation, Solution Architecture, Software Development, Governance and Project Management.

In the IIS we use some of the latest Cloud Technologies to deliver the services required by the organisation. We use Microsoft Azure extensively for our Data Lake and databases as well as programs that include SSMS, SQL, R and Python to analyse and process data. Additionally we also use tools such as Microsoft Power BI and Qlik Sense to visualise data to provide our stakeholders with a range of outputs and products to meet their needs.

These tools were instrumental in delivering our core products and services relating to the vast amounts of Covid-19 data being generated each day. These data services included collection, processing, automation, analysis, dashboards, extracts and complex ad-hoc queries or predictive analysis required to process and track the situation. By working across the HSE with multiple stakeholders we have helped provide actionable information to the HSE, Department of Health and other key agencies throughout the Pandemic.

From the beginning the IIS helped build a co-ordinated national network to automate the collection and reporting of daily Covid cases from laboratories. We then built on this by collecting and reporting on hospital bed capacity and critical care resources to provide up to date information on acute facilities. This has been enhanced throughout the entire pandemic by our work with the National Test and Trace programme in developing complex reports and solutions to help inform decision making. These reports included tracking serial testing across educational and other key facilities and later contact tracing to assist public health teams.

Later that same year the IIS played a key role in rolling out one the most successful vaccinations programs in Europe by processing the vast amounts of data generated from every single vaccination and assisting the Department of Health in issuing the millions of Digital Covid Certificates for both vaccination and recovery. 

We continue to build and deliver reports, interactive dashboards and place ourselves at the forefront of developing technology driven solutions. As we look to the future the IIS will continue to empower health leaders to improve patient care and services and the delivery of high quality and timely information through a centralised enabling service.

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Updated 26/01/23