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Disease control

At any given time there are a number of infectious diseases in circulation that can quickly spread and cause health problems.

These infectious diseases, also known as communicable diseases, include MRSA, measles, scarlet fever and E.coli.

UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is responsible for controlling and managing outbreaks of these types of disease.

We work closely with UKHSA and other organisations to respond quickly to any possible health threats posed by such diseases.

Notification of diseases

Medical practitioners have a statutory duty to notify their local authority or local UKHSA health protection team of suspected cases of certain infectious diseases.

Diseases that must be notified include:

  • acute meningitis
  • cholera
  • diphtheria
  • food poisoning
  • scarlet fever
  • measles
  • mumps
  • tuberculosis
  • typhus

See the full list of notifiable diseases.

In some cases these notifications are used to monitor the development of outbreaks in a community or to evaluate the success of vaccination programmes.

Often these notifications can help to identify sources of infection such as contaminated food, water or land.

They can also help to identify, alert and protect anyone who may be in danger of catching the disease. In some cases, that might be relatives, friends or contacts of the affected person.