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Communicable Disease Program

Program Goal

To prevent the spread of communicable diseases.


St. Lawrence County residents.


This program includes surveillance, investigation, intervention, reporting and follow-up of reportable communicable diseases to reduce the spread of disease in the St. Lawrence County community.



Handwashing is one of the easiest and most important ways to prevent the spread of infection and illness. Wash your hands with soap and water so that you can stay healthy!

Find out more about how to prevent illness with clean hands from the resources below. 

Clean Hands Keep You Healthy


Clean Hands Count


Read the science behind hand washing from the CDC.

Or watch The Fifth Guy (Youtube Video) to find out what happens when you don't wash your hands.


Staying up to date on the recommended vaccines is also an important method of disease prevention. To learn more about the appropriate vaccines for you and your family, visit the CDC or our Immunization page.


Information on Communicable Disease


Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Information
*** Tdap/DTaP vaccine should be routinely promoted and provided before outbreaks occur.

Note: New ACIP (Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices)  recommendations include 3 changes with regards to Pertussis vaccination:

1) Tdap can be given to children between the ages of 7-10 (if under-immunized or their vaccination status is not known)

2)  Adults 19 through 64 years of age should receive a single dose of Tdap.

3) Tdap can be given to adults 65 years of age and older  if not previously vaccinated , especially if there is close contact with infants  

4) There is no longer a suggested minimum interval between receiving the tetanus-diphtheria (Td) vaccine and the tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap) vaccine.


For Providers

For information on reporting requirements, please view the NYSDOH Communicable Disease Reporting Requirements sheet or call our office at (315) 386-2325.

Think Measles

Lyme Disease & West Nile Virus

Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is caused by bacteria transmitted by the deer tick (Ixodes scapularis) . Lyme disease may cause symptoms affecting the skin, nervous system, heart and/or joints of an individual. 95,000 cases have now been confirmed in New York State. Lyme disease became a reportable in 1986.

Information on Lyme Disease

NYSDOH Tick/Lyme Dataset


Tick Encounter
Tick Encounter Resource Center

Tick Sizes Deer Tick


West Nile Virus (WNV)
In the Fall of 1999, West Nile Virus, a mosquito-borne infection that can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain), was found in New York State. While the chances of a person getting encephalitis are small, the St. Lawrence County Public Health Department wants to educate residents of ways to reduce exposure to the virus.

Information on West Nile Virus


Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE)
Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) is a rare but serious viral disease spread by mosquitoes that can affect people and horses. EEE can also cause disease in captive birds such as the ring-necked pheasant, emu, ostriches, quail and ducks. EEE infection and disease can occasionally occur in other livestock, deer, dogs, other mammals, reptiles and amphibians.

Information on Eastern Equine Encephalitis


Zika Virus
Zika is a virus that is usually spread by certain kinds of mosquitoes. It can also be spread from one person to another through sexual contact or blood transfusion. For most people it is a mild infection with few or no symptoms. But it has been linked to health problems in some people. It is a serious concern for pregnant women, their partners and couples planning a pregnancy because it can cause serious birth defects. Zika is not spread from person to person by casual contact.

Information on the Zika Virus


General Mosquito Disease Information and Prevention
Mosquitoes usually are considered a nuisance pest, but occasionally they can transmit viruses to people and some animals. These viruses can cause illness and even death. While your chances of being infected with a disease through a mosquito bite are very small, there are simple steps you can take to reduce your risk of being bitten.

Information on Mosquitoes 


No Mosquitos


**Mosquito larvicide dunks are avaiable (in limited quantity) for pick up in Canton Office only.**