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Communicable Diseases

One of the core duties of public health is to track and control communicable diseases. Communicable diseases are those that can be spread person to person, animal to person, and contaminated surfaces to person, such as influenza, noro virus, and foodborne illnesses such as Salmonella and E. coli. 

All hospitals, physicians' offices, and laboratories are required to report positive communicable disease information to health departments, per state regulations. Public health investigates illnesses and outbreaks to halt further transmission.


Disease Control & Epidemiology

Epidemiology is the public health science that focuses on evaluating and studying disease spread, control and prevention within populations.  At NCHD, we work to detect, investigate, and prevent infectious disease outbreaks within our communities. Our Communicable Disease staff work to collect, analyze and review infectious disease data, and provide public health consultation and education to health care providers and the general public.

NCHD investigates infectious diseases that can be spread from person-to-person, through contact with animals or insects, or through ingesting contaminated food and water. This includes serious diseases such as E. coli, Salmonella, hepatitis A, meningitis, rabies, plague, Tuberculosis, Hanta Virus, and whooping cough (pertussis), just to name a few. When certain diseases are reported to the health department, we work hard to determine where a person got sick and try to prevent further spread of the illness. We also work to prevent the occurrence of diseases in our communities through education to our residents and health care providers.




Influenza, hospitalized


STEC (Shiga toxin-producing E.coli)


# of cases





West Nile virus


# of cases
The above numbers represent calendar year 2021 and are combined totals of all six counties in northeast Colorado. 
To see the annual influenza report covering the 2022-2023 flu season, please click here.

STD Trends in Northeast Colorado

* All county numbers are combined to protect confidentiality according to CDPHE's Data Release Policy.

†Includes all stages of syphilis:

- Primary and Secondary Syphilis is symptomatic and highly infectious

- Early Latent Syphilis is asymptomatic and not highly infectious

‡ Regardless of stage at diagnosis

Disease Reporting

By law, certain diseases that have public health consequences must be reported to public health agencies for further investigation and to keep the illness from spreading. Click here for a list of disease that are required to be reported by health care providers and laboratories in Colorado.

If you have questions please call NCHD Headquarters at (970) 522-3741 x1241.


For after hours and weekend public health emergencies, please call the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment answering service for the on-call epidemiologist at (303) 370-9395.

There are 3 simple things that YOU can do to stay healthy

1. Cover your cough
2. Wash your hands
3. Do not return to work/school or prepare food if you have gastrointestinal symptoms.

If you'd like more information about our communicable disease program, or to report a communicable disease, please contact our Disease Control Specialist

Tammy Hort, RN, CIC
(970) 522-3741 x 1241

For more information about communicable diseases consider one of the following resources:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 

National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases 

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