Epidemiology

Communicable Disease

The epidemiologists at Southwest District Health investigate reportable diseases and implements measures to prevent the spread of diseases. Healthcare providers, labs, and hospitals report communicable diseases via dedicated, confidential reporting line.

Reporting line208-455-5442
Confidential Fax Reporting Line 208-455-5350
Diseases and Conditions

There are over 70 reportable diseases and conditions in Idaho. When one of these conditions is reported, Southwest District Health (SWDH) Epidemiologists (Epis) will investigate the illness and work to establish the source of the infection, determine whether others have been exposed, and if an outbreak has occurred. Epis may make recommendations to restrict people from daycare, school or work while they are infectious to prevent further spread. Epis sometimes make recommendations for those who have been exposed to an infectious disease to receive an immunization or a medication to prevent them from becoming ill. SWDH Epis also offer case management for active tuberculosis (TB) which includes a way to help clients to take their TB medications called Directly Observed Therapy or DOT.

EpidemiologistJennifer Tripp, MT(ASCP), MPH, RN208-455-5362
EpidemiologistCheryl Craig, MPH208-455-5380
Administrative AssistantEllen Miller208-455-5445
Reporting line 208-455-5442
Confidential Fax Reporting Line 208-455-5350
Diseases and Conditions

Health Professionals

Idaho Reportable Diseases

In Idaho, licensed physicians, hospital or health care facility administrators, laboratory directors, physician assistants, certified nurse practitioners, registered nurses, school health nurses, infection surveillance staff, public health officials and coroners are required to report all reportable diseases and conditions.

School administrators must report the closure of any public, parochial, charter, or private school within one (1) working day when, in his or her opinion, such a closing is related to communicable disease.

To report a communicable disease or condition to Southwest District Health Communicable Disease / Epidemiology Program:

  • Call SWDH Epi Confidential Phone Reporting Line: 208-455-5442
  • Fax SWDH Epi Confidential Fax Reporting Line: 208-455-5350

HIPAA and Public Health

In accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), the privacy rule expressly permits protected health information (PHI) to be shared for specified public health purposes. For example, covered entities (providers, nurses, health facilities, labs, etc.) may disclose PHI, without individual authorization to a public health authority legally authorized to collect or receive the information for the purposes of preventing or controlling disease, injury, or disability. See 45 CFR 164.512(b)((1)(i).