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Communicable diseases and unusual illnesses

Reporting to the Department of Public Health and local health boards

Who must report:

Physicians, registered nurses, social workers and certain other front line health care providers, as well as hospitals, clinics, ambulatory surgery centers, and nursing homes and their employees.

What to report:

There is an extensive list of reportable diseases, illnesses, work-related injuries, and other medical conditions that may pose a threat to other patients, health care workers, or the public. The Department of Public Health developed an abbreviated, 2-page guide that includes a limited set of these illnesses, primarily reportable by clinicians. The complete list is contained in the DPH regulation, Reportable Diseases, Surveillance, and Isolation and Quarantine Requirements.

How to report:

Depending on the nature of the disease or condition, health care providers must inform the local city or town board of health or the Department of Public Health either immediately by telephone, or within 1-2 days. In a number of cases, isolates must also be sent to a state laboratory.

This 2-page guide from DPH contains information on how to report the specific disease or illness you identified.


Reporting Diseases and Surveillance Information


105 CMR § 300