Preventive Health System

Communicable Diseases List

Last updated on January 4th, 2023 at 12:13 pm

Communicable diseases are illnesses that spread from person to person through direct contact or by coming into close-proximity with an infected person. Learn about communicable diseases and the list of 86 reported communicable diseases, so you can protect yourself and others around you.

What is a communicable disease?

A communicable disease is one that is spread from one person to another through a variety of ways that include contact with blood and bodily fluids; breathing in an airborne virus; or by being bitten by an insect.

Reporting of cases of communicable disease is important in the planning and evaluation of disease prevention and control programs, in the assurance of medical therapy, and in the detection of common-source outbreaks. Some examples of the reportable communicable diseases include Hepatitis A, B & C, influenza, measles, and salmonella and other food-borne illnesses.

Common Communicable Diseases List

There are 86 communicable diseases are reported worldwide and the following 19 are among them and majorly contributed.

  1. 2019-nCoV
  2. CRE
  3. Ebola
  4. Enterovirus D68
  5. Flu
  6. Hantavirus
  7. Hepatitis A
  8. Hepatitis B
  10. Measles
  11. Monkeypox
  12. MRSA
  13. Pertussis
  14. Rabies
  15. Sexually Transmitted Disease
  16. Shigellosis
  17. Tuberculosis
  18. West Nile Virus
  19. Zika

Complete List of 86 Communicable Diseases Reported

  1. Anthrax, human or animal
  2. Botulism (Infant, Foodborne, Wound
  3. Brucellosis, human
  4. Cholera
  5. Ciguatera Fish Poisoning
  6. Diphtheria
  7. Domoic Acid Poisoning (Amnesic Shellfish Poisoning)
  8. Flavivirus infection of undetermined species
  9. Foodborne Disease (when two or more cases or suspected cases of food-borne disease from separate households are suspected to have the same source of illness)
  10. Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome
  11. Influenza due to novel strains (human)
  12. Measles (Rubeola)
  13. Meningococcal Infections
  14. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)
  15. Novel Virus with Pandemic Potential
  16. Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning
  17. Plague, Human or Animal
  18. Rabies, Human or Animal
  19. Scombroid Fish Poisoning
  20. Shiga Toxin (detected in feces)
  21. Smallpox (Variola)
  22. Tularemia, human
  23. Viral Hemorrhagic Fevers, human or animal (Crimean-Congo, Ebola, Lassa, and Marburg viruses)
  24. Babesiosis
  25. Campylobacteriosis
  26. Carbapenem-resistant
  27. Enterobacteriaceae (CRE)
  28. Chickenpox (Varicella)
  29. Chikungunya Virus Infection
  30. Cryptosporidiosis
  31. Dengue Virus Infection
  32. Encephalitis, specify etiology (Viral, Bacterial, Fungal, Parasitic)
  33. Escherichia coli
  34. Haemophilus influenza, invasive disease
  35. Hantavirus Infections
  36. Hepatitis A, acute infection
  37. Listeriosis
  38. Malaria
  39. Meningitis, specify etiology (Viral, Bacterial, Fungal, Parasitic)
  40. Paratyphoid Fever
  41. Pertussis (whooping cough)
  42. Poliovirus Infection
  43. Psittacosis
  44. Q Fever
  45. Relapsing Fever
  46. Salmonellosis (other than Typhoid Fever)
  47. Shigellosis
  48. Syphilis (all stages, including congenital)
  49. Trichinosis
  50. Tuberculosis (TB)
  51. Typhoid Fever, Cases and Carriers
  52. Vibrio Infections
  53. West Nile Virus Infection
  54. Yellow Fever
  55. Yersiniosis
  56. Zika Virus Infection
  57. Anaplasmosis
  58. Brucellosis, animal (except infections because of Brucella canis)
  59. Chancroid
  60. Coccidioidomycosis
  61. Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease (CJD)
  62. Cyclosporiasis
  63. Cysticercosis or Taeniasis
  64. Ehrlichiosis
  65. Giardiasis
  66. Gonococcal Infections
  67. Hepatitis B (specify acute, chronic, or perinatal)
  68. Hepatitis C (specify acute, chronic, or perinatal)
  69. Hepatitis D (Delta) (specify acute case or chronic)
  70. Hepatitis E, acute infection
  71. Influenza
  72. Legionellosis
  73. Leprosy (Hansen’s Disease)
  74. Leptospirosis
  75. Lyme Disease
  76. Mumps
  77. Respiratory Syncytial Virus
  78. Rickettsial Diseases (non-Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, including Typhus and Typhus-like illnesses)
  79. Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
  80. Rubella (German Measles)
  81. Rubella Syndrome, congenital
  82. Tetanus
  83. Toxoplasmosis
  84. Tularemia, animal
  85. Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
  86. (AIDS) confirmed

List as per California Department of Public Health (source)

Learn about non-communicable diseases list

How do these communicable diseases spread?

How these diseases spread depends on the specific disease or infectious agent. Some ways in which communicable diseases spread are by:

  1. Physical contact with an infected person, such as through touch (staphylococcus), sexual intercourse (gonorrhea, HIV), fecal/oral transmission (hepatitis A), or droplets (influenza, TB)
  2. Contact with a contaminated surface or object (Norwalk virus), food (salmonella, E. coli), blood (HIV, hepatitis B), or water (cholera);
  3. Bites from insects or animals capable of transmitting the disease (mosquito: malaria and yellow fever; flea: plague); and
  4. Travel through the air, such as tuberculosis or measles.

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Communicable diseases are contagious and can be passed on through direct contact or by breathing air containing droplets of infectious material. Communicable diseases are caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi, and other means. The list of communicable disease is commonly reported worldwide and hence not complete.

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