Outbreak and Infectious Disease Reporting Line

Policy

Category: Control of Infectious Diseases
Subject: Outbreak and Infectious Disease Reporting Line
Division: N/A
Policy Number: CA.82.01.106
Effective Date: April 23, 2014

POLICY STATEMENT

It is the policy of Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health that any call or voicemail message left on the Outbreak/Infectious Disease Reporting Line (OIDRL) is risk assessed and followed up by a member of the Control of Infectious Diseases (CID) team as soon as possible.  For messages of an urgent nature (e.g. iGAS, N. Meningitidis, or new outbreak) the investigation will start immediately by the most responsible person (MRP) or the area PHN/PHI if available to take the case/outbreak.

SCOPE

This policy applies to all employees working in the Control of Infectious Diseases Program including Public Health Nurses, Public Health Inspectors, Program Assistants, the CID Supervisor, and Program Manager.

RESPONSIBILITIES

Program Manager/Supervisor will:

  • Schedule MRP assigned for covering the OIDRL.

CID Employees: 

  • Will be assigned date/times as the MRP with responsibility for manning the Outbreak/Infectious Disease reporting line by the Program Supervisor;
  • If employee is unable to take their assigned time as MRP, it is their responsibility to find a replacement/switch;
  • In the event of illness, or another urgent issue, the Program Assistant or another CID employee will be assigned MRP as a priority duty by the Manager or Supervisor; and 
  • CID employees doing MRP must inform callers that the call is being documented and they must document all calls as per professional/organizational/program policies.            

REFERENCES AND RELATED FORMS, POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Corresponding Procedure:  CA.82.02.106 Outbreak and Infectious Disease Reporting Line
CA.31.02.407 Outbreak/Infectious Disease Reporting Line Guidance Document

APPROVED BY

Rob Thompson   


Procedure

Category: Control of  Infectious Diseases
Subject: Outbreak and Infectious Disease Reporting Line
Division: N/A
Procedure Number: CA.82.02.106
Effective Date: June 7, 2011

PROCEDURE

  1. The Outbreak Line is staffed for live answer between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm.  It also has a voicemail box which must be checked regularly throughout the scheduled workday by the assigned most responsible person (MRP) or designate.
  2. The MRP must try to live-answer calls, but if this is not possible due to call volume or priority duties the voicemail box should be checked frequently, at a minimum of once every 30 minutes.
  3. Callers must be advised that the call will be recorded as per legal and organizational requirements.
  4. Messages received on the Outbreak Line should be immediately transferred to the individual following, or person covering a specific case or facility, or remain with the MRP for follow-up if the individual generally responsible for a specific issue or facility is unavailable.
  5. For urgent issues, the MRP must make person-to-person contact when transferring message to ensure appropriate transfer of investigation responsibilities. When there is no one to refer the urgent issue to, the MRP must begin the investigation.  The Program Supervisor/Manager should be advised of any new urgent issue.
  6. All calls received on the Outbreak Line must be documented according to the organization and program policies regarding documentation using electronic health record and include any follow-up completed.

REFERENCES AND RELATED FORMS, POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Corresponding Policy:  CA.82.01.106 Outbreak and Infectious Disease Reporting Line
CA.31.02.407 Outbreak/Infectious Disease Reporting Line Guidance Document
CA.50.01.102 and CA.50.02.102 Documentation Practices
CA.86.01.105 and CA.86.02.105 Documentation

APPROVED BY

Rob Thompson