Infectious diseases are those in which an organism (bacteria, fungus, virus, parasite) enters the body and causes illness. Many are spread easily, and in different ways: in the air (droplets from sneezing or coughing), in body fluids (blood, saliva or mucus), on contact with contaminated surfaces (doorknobs, skin, personal hygiene items), from insect or animal bites (mosquitoes, ticks) or in contaminated water or food.
The Missoula City-County Health Dept.'s Infectious Disease office, in conjunction with the State Health Dept., tracks outbreaks of infectious diseases, notifies the public of risks and prevention measures, tracks the disease to it's source, and notifies people who have had direct exposure to an infectious disease.
State law requires that most infectious diseases be reported to the local Health Dept. to prevent further spread.
Infectious Diseases are sometimes referred to as Communicable Diseases.
Disease(s) of the Moment - Disease information
- HIV / AIDS
Disease reporting - for health care providers
- Health Alert/Advisory/Update
- Reportable Diseases in Montana
- Report Forms
- Contact Information
- Health Care Provider Infectious Disease Reporting Binder
- Phone - 406-258-3896
- FAX - 406-258-3610
- email - firstname.lastname@example.org
- In an emergency, to report a suspected infectious disease crisis or event, call 9-1-1.
Infectious diseases can be spread through the air, on surfaces, through body fluids, in contaminated food or water. Different diseases are spread in different ways. There are things everyone can do to reduce the chances of getting any infectious disease:
- Get vaccinated for vaccine-preventable diseases. See Immunizations.
- Wash your hands often.
- Do not touch your face, eyes or nose unless you have just washed your hands.
- Cover your cough or sneeze using a tissue, or cough or sneeze into your elbow.
- Always practice safe sex. Learn how to use a condom.
- Don't share needles.
- Foodborne illness prevention. When handling food:
- CLEAN. Wash hands, cutting boards, utensils, and countertops.
- SEPARATE. Keep raw meat, poultry, and seafood separate from ready-to-eat foods.
- COOK. Use a food thermometer to ensure that foods are cooked to a safe internal temperature: 145°F for whole meats (allowing the meat to rest for 3 minutes before carving or consuming), 160°F for ground meats, and 165°F for all poultry.
- CHILL. Keep your refrigerator below 40°F and refrigerate food that will spoil.
- Don't prepare food for others if you have diarrhea or vomiting.
- Be especially careful preparing food for children, pregnant woman, those in poor health, and older adults.
- Don't drink from streams or lakes unless you first filter or boil the water .
- Protect yourself from ticks and mosquitoes.
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