Thursday, October 20, 2011

It's A Project, For Pete's Sake!

Yesterday we saw many congratulatory messages on the first birthday of the launch of the CDC's ATSDR National ALS Registry. As Sleepy watched the electronic high fives and pats on the back, Sleepy also wondered in what other sector do you party one-year post-launch simply because it's one-year post-launch?

Launch+365 is normally a time for some hard looks at project milestones and accountability. It's one of the many spots on the project timelines to evaluate the project status with an eye toward continuous improvement. What is working? What isn't working? What adjustments are in order?

Yesterday stakeholders celebrated. There's no reason to break our arms patting ourselves on the back yet. So far there have been no deliverables of epidemiological data from the project. There is an apparent low patient uptake on the supplemental surveys. Sleepy hopes that while the celebratory messages were strewn yesterday that somebody was working on the project milestones and adjustments to get the right deliverables to the scientists who can use the information.

Perhaps it's the nature of government work to need to sing for next year's supper. Sleepy would rather it had been a song about project milestones and adjustments rather than "Happy Birthday."

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