Communicable Disease

A Communicable Disease is a Notifiable Condition

Notifiable Condition reporting-- "It's not just a good idea, it's the law."

In accordance with Washington State law, public health and health care providers should report notifiable conditions to the local health jurisdiction in the county of the patient's residence. Disease reporting telephone numbers for Garfield County and Washington State Department of Health are provided below. For a complete list of notifiable conditions for health care providers, hospitals, laboratories, and veterinarians, please refer to the poster section at www.doh.wa.gov/PublicHealthandHealthcareProviders/Notifiable Conditions/ReportingPosters.aspx

  • Garfield County Health District:

             509-843-3412 after hours: 509-843-3494

  • Washington State Department of Health 24-hour reporting line:

             1-877-539-4344

How to report a disease (Notifiable Condition)

General Information About Communicable Diseases

Communicable diseases are those conditions that can be spread to others through air, touch, or contact with contaminated body fluids. Some of the most common communicable diseases are:

  • chlamydia,
  • hepatitis A, B and C,
  • giardia,
  • salmonella,
  • pertussis
  • and campylobacter.

Not only is it important to be treated for infection, it is necessary for the health department to track communicable diseases in order to ensure the safety of the community by seeking to prevent disease outbreaks.

Diseases that the health department keeps track of are called "reportable". All physicians, healthcare providers and laboratory personnel are required by law to submit reportable disease information to their local health department.

Garfield County Health District has staff that is responsible for preventing possible disease outbreaks and providing education to the public. When cases of communicable disease are found, a confidential investigation is conducted to determine the source of the infection. Some diseases are spread via talking, coughing, and sneezing while others are spread through contaminated water, food, blood, and/or sexual contact. All communicable diseases must be investigated thoroughly to prevent the spread of disease.

All Washington healthcare providers, laboratories, healthcare facilities, and veterinarians are required to report patients with the following conditions to their local health department. Reporting enables appropriate public health follow-up for patients, helps identify outbreaks, and provides a better understanding of Washington morbidity (illness) patterns. Some communicable conditions are to be reported immediately, such as Measles. Additional timeframes for other conditions are 24 hours up to 3 business days.

**All personal information is kept confidential when reports are made.

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