Communicable Disease Surveillance and Investigation

What We Do

To protect the residents and people who work, play, or visit (our community) against the spread of infectious/contagious illnesses, the Cambridge Public Health Department (CPHD) and the Division of Epidemiology and Data Services work closely with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) in conducting online disease reporting and surveillance. The state’s reporting system is called the Massachusetts Virtual Epidemiologic Network (MAVEN). State law requires that doctors, hospitals, and laboratories report communicable diseases to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. 


Getting vaccinated, getting tested, and wearing a mask are the best ways to protect against contracting and spreading COVID-19. Visit the How to Protect Yourself from COVID-19 and the What To Do If You Test Positive for COVID-19 pages for more information.

Infectious Diseases

Infectious diseases include the flu, measles, HIV, Lyme, COVID-19, salmonella, and many more. Visit the Infectious Diseases page for information on contacting the public health nursing department for guidance and reporting.

Foodborne Illnesses

Foodborne illness, also known as food poisoning, is caused by eating food or drinking water that has been contaminated with germs such as bacteria or viruses. Visit the Foodborne Illness page for more information and to submit a foodborne illness complaint.

Updated: August 8, 2022