Key messages

  • Notifiable conditions are included in Schedule 4 of the Public Health and Wellbeing Regulations 2009 and are divided into four groups on the basis of the method of notification and the information required.
  • The regulations exists to protect the public’s health and safety.
  • Group A conditions require immediate notification to the department by telephone upon initial diagnosis or clinical suspicion (presumptive or confirmed), with written notification to follow within 5 days.

The Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 requires that prescribed conditions are notified to the department by persons in charge of pathology services (laboratories), and medical practitioners (doctors). The law exists to monitor and control the occurrence of infectious diseases and other specified conditions, and helps to prevent further illness.

Notifiable conditions are included in Schedule 4 of the Public Health and Wellbeing Regulations 2009 and are divided into four groups on the basis of the method of notification and the information required.

Condition groupings

Group A: Conditions require immediate notification to the department by telephone – 1300 651 160 – upon initial diagnosis or clinical suspicion (presumptive or confirmed), with written notification to follow within 5 days.

Group B: Conditions require written notification only within 5 days of diagnosis (presumptive or confirmed).

Group C: Conditions include the sexually transmissible diseases and should be notified using the same form. To preclude identification of the patient, only the first two letters of the first name and last name of the patient are required.

Group D: Conditions include HIV infection (human immunodeficiency virus) and AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome), and written notification is required within 5 days of confirmation of diagnosis.

The table on the 'Notify a condition now' page lists all the notifiable conditions in their relevant group.

Notification methods

The table on the 'Notify a condition now' page provides links to notify a condition online or download PDF forms to complete offline and post/fax. The relevant forms are linked for each condition. 

Important – do not email notifications. 

Laboratory notification

Around Australia and overseas, it has been recognised that laboratory notification is an integral part of any disease surveillance system.

Laboratories are required to notify tests, indicating:

  • the probable presence of a human pathogenic organism associated with a scheduled infectious disease or condition; see 'Notify a condition now' for the full list of conditions
  • lead (blood lead greater than 5 μg/dL), whether or not the test was requested as part of routine biological monitoring as prescribed by the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations 2007.

In addition to the above, the Public Health and Wellbeing Regulations require notification from laboratories of the following microorganisms isolated or detected in food or water supplies:

  • Campylobacter spp.
  • Cryptosporidium spp.
  • Salmonella spp.
  • verotoxin-producing Escherichia coli (VTEC)
  • Vibrio spp.
  • Giardia cysts
  • Listeria monocytogenes
  • Cyclospora spp.
  • hepatitis A
  • norovirus.

Immediate notification must be made by telephone, followed by notice in writing within 5 days specifying the microorganism isolated or detected, date of isolation or detection, source (food or water) and any batch identification (if appropriate).

Important – do not Email notifications.

What information you need to notify

Notifications in people

Information Doctors Laboratories
Diagnosis (presumptive or confirmed) All conditions All conditions
Patient name
Family name and given names of the patient Group A and B conditions Group A and B conditions
Patient code (being the first two letters of the family name and the first two letters of the given name) Group C and D conditions Group C and D conditions
Patient address
Residential street address of the person (e.g. Unit 2/123 Smith St, Downtown) Group A and B conditions only Group A and B conditions only
Residential postcode All conditions All conditions
Sex of the patient All conditions All conditions
Date of birth of the patient All conditions All conditions
Indigenous status All conditions
Country of birth (and year arrived in Australia if born overseas) All conditions
Alive/deceased All conditions
Occupation Group A and B conditions only
School/childcare attended Group A and B conditions only
Clinical comments All conditions
Date of onset of illness All conditions
Risk factors All conditions
Suspected mode of transmission All conditions
If the notifiable condition is blood lead greater than 10 µg/dL, whether or not the test was requested as part of routine biological monitoring of the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations 2007, if known Blood lead only Blood lead only
Date the sample was taken (specimen date) All conditions
Laboratory finding (test, result, date and value) All conditions
Details of medical practitioner making notification or requesting laboratory testing (name, address and telephone) and report date All conditions All conditions
Details of laboratory making notification (name, address and telephone) and report date All conditions
Organism isolated or detected All microorganisms
Date of isolation or detection All microorganisms
Source All microorganisms
Type and batch identification (if appropriate) All microorganisms
Details of laboratory (name, address and telephone) - All microorganisms

Notification investigations

The department conducts surveillance on infectious diseases to pinpoint outbreaks, to prevent the spread of infection and prevent further exposure.

For certain conditions, public health officers conduct further investigations. This may involve contacting the patient to obtain more detailed information.

In most circumstances, department staff will not contact the patient without seeking the consent of the notifying doctor.

The department publishes annual, quarterly and daily surveillance reports online and in hard copy. See 'Infectious diseases – surveillance reports'.

Contact details