What are Communicable Diseases?
Communicable diseases were the leading causes of death in the U. S. up through the 1950’s. Public Health is largely responsible for controlling the spread of communicable diseases, which spread from one person to another through the air, or by direct or indirect contact. North Carolina law requires certain communicable diseases and conditions to be reported to the local health director in the county where the disease occurs. Physicians, school principals, day-care centers, medical facilities, operators of restaurants and other food and drink establishments and persons in charge of laboratories are required to report specific communicable diseases or conditions.
What are the Goals and Strategies of Carteret County Health Department’s Communicable Disease Program?
The goal of the Communicable Disease Program is to ensure proper reporting of communicable diseases, investigate suspected outbreaks and put into place disease control and prevention measures.
Our strategies include:
- Monitoring case reports from a variety of sources in the community.
- Setting systems into place to identify emerging diseases, including bioterrorism events.
- Enforcing public health laws in order to control diseases and other hazards, which may be harmful to the public health.
- Collaborating with other health agencies and community partners to design and implement measures to prevent outbreak of disease in the community.
What is Tuberculosis?
- Tuberculosis(TB) is a communicable disease caused by bacteria called Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The bacteria usually attack the lungs, but can also attack any other part of the body such as kidneys, spine and brain. If not treated properly, TB disease can be fatal. TB disease was once the leading cause of death in the United States.
- TB spreads through the air from one person to another. The bacteria are put into the air when a person with active TB disease of the lungs or throat coughs or sneezes. People nearby may breathe in these bacteria and become infected.
What are the Goals and Strategies of Carteret County Health Department’s TB Control Program?
Our goal is to eliminate tuberculosis disease in our community.
Our strategies are:
- Early identification of TB disease
- Provide appropriate disease treatment
- Minimize number of new infections
- Preventive treatment for infected individuals
- Tuberculosis (TB) skin testing using PPD to identify infection
- Chest X-rays to rule out active TB for first time PPD positive person
- Screening for TB for employment
- Clinical evaluation and TB medications at no charge
- Case follow-up and home visits to assure adequate treatment
What is the Difference between TB Infection and TB Disease?
|Tubercle bacilli in the body
||Tubercle bacilli in the body
|TB skin test reaction usually positive
||TB skin test reaction usually positive
|Chest x-ray usually normal
||Chest x-ray usually abnormal
|Sputum smears and cultures negative
||Sputum smears and cultures positive
||Symptoms such as cough, fever, weight loss
||Often infectious before treatment
|Not a case of TB
||A case of TB
|Preventive treatment optional/may be recommended
||Treatment mandated by law
Where Can I Find More Information about Communicable Diseases and TB?
Call Carteret County Health Department at 252.728.8550 or find information at the following websites: