Notifiable conditions are those conditions that are reportable to the local and state health departments by law. This is for the public’s protection and helps the local health department track, detect and respond to diseases and disease outbreaks.
Several Texas laws (Health and Safety Code, Chapters 81, 84,and 87) require specific information regarding notifiable conditions to be provided to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). Health care providers, hospitals, laboratories, schools, and others are required to report patients who are suspected of having a notifiable condition (Chapter 97, Title 25, Texas Administrative Code).
The release of this information is allowable under HIPAA regulations. Section 164.512(b) permits covered entities to release private health information to a public health authority that is authorized by law to collect and receive information for preventing and controlling the disease. This information includes reporting of disease, public health investigations, and public health interventions. Under this exception, you are authorized to release information to the public health department.
In addition to the notifiable conditions, any outbreaks, exotic diseases, and unusual group expressions of illness must be reported, regardless of source. All diseases shall be reported at a minimum by:
Date of Birth
Date of Onset
Method of Diagnosis
Name, Address, and Telephone Number of Physicians
Cases or suspected cases of illness considered to be possible public health emergencies, outbreaks, exotic diseases, and unusual group expressions of illness must be reported to the local health department immediately. Other diseases for which there must be a quick public health response must be reported within one working day of suspicion. All other conditions must be reported within one week.
The 24/7 contact number for reporting health emergencies and urgent epidemiological assistance is 940-349-2909.