To help promote and protect the health of our community, the Gloucester County Department of Health investigates individual cases and outbreaks of reported communicable diseases. Communicable diseases are those conditions that can be spread to others through:
- Contact with contaminated body fluids
Common Communicable Diseases
Some of the most common communicable diseases include:
- Chicken Pox
- Hepatitis A, B, and C
It's not only important to be treated for infection, it is necessary for the health department to track communicable diseases in order 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. There are currently over 60 communicable diseases that are reportable in New Jersey.
When cases of communicable disease are found, The Gloucester County Department Health Communicable Disease staff conducts confidential investigations 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.
In addition to tracking and monitoring communicable diseases, the Communicable Disease staff:
- Monitor disease trends
- Provide current statistics and other information to the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH), local doctors, hospitals, the public, and the media
- Works to control and contain the spread of diseases through case investigation and contact tracing
We also provide education and preventive treatment. For more information call 856-218-4102.
Reportable Diseases - It's the Law
All New Jersey physicians and other healthcare providers are required to report cases of specific reportable diseases to their local health department (N.J.A.C. 8:57). Reporting makes it possible to:
- Help identify outbreaks
- Provide the appropriate public health follow-up for patients
- Provides a better understanding of Gloucester County health patterns
- Follow-up investigation for all reportable communicable diseases is done by Registered Nurses or an Epidemiologist.
- To report a communicable disease during business hours (Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm) call 856-218-4101. During non-business hours, call 856-589-0911.