Communicable Diseases and/or Life Threatening Illnesses

Administrative Procedure 3.601/4.601

This administrative procedure is for employees and/or students who acquire a communicable disease or a life threatening illness, which may affect their health, safety, welfare, and that of others with whom they contact.

Respecting Privacy

A communicable disease, as defined by the Illinois Department of Public Health Administrative Code, is an illness due to a specific infectious agent or its toxic products that arises through transmission of that agent or its products from an infected person, animal or inanimate source to a susceptible host.

ECC will comply with all applicable statutes and regulations that protect the privacy of persons who have a communicable disease. The number of personnel aware of the employee’s or student’s condition will be kept at a minimum, in accordance with federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations, to ensure proper care of the employee or student and to prevent situations which may increase the potential for transmission of the communicable disease.

Every effort will be made to ensure that procedurally sufficient safeguards are in place to maintain the confidentiality of medical information provided to the college. Private medical information will only be disclosed to individuals who have a legitimate need to know. These persons shall not further disclose such information.

Any course of action taken by the College with regard to this procedure will consider:

  • The physical condition of the employee or student.
  • The expected type of interaction the employee or student will have with others in the College setting.
  • The potential risk factors for the employee or student and others in the College setting.
  • The current available public health department guidelines concerning the particular disease in question, and
  • Any other appropriate factors.

Reporting Suspected Communicable Diseases

Employees and students should report suspected cases of communicable disease to the following college personnel.  If the first individual is not available, please contact the next individual in the order listed.

  1. Senior Director of Emergency Management
  2. Assistant Vice President of Student Services and Development/Dean of Students
  3. Chief Human Resources Officer

Required Reporting

Section 690.200 of the Illinois Communicable Diseases Code requires that ECC notify the local health authority (i.e., Kane County Health Department) or vis-a-versa, whenever an employee or student has or is suspected of having a communicable disease as defined in the Code. Notification is the responsibility of the Senior Director of Emergency Management or the Executive Assistant in Business and Finance/Risk Management.

Diseases Requiring Immediate Notification

Class I(a)

When an employee, student, or visitor to campus is known or suspected to have one of the following diseases, as determined by the appropriate laboratory test or a confirmed diagnosis, the local health authority will be notified  within three hours:  Anthrax, Botulism (food borne), Brucellosis, Influenza A (Novel virus), Plague, Poliomyelitis, Q-fever, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, Smallpox, Tularemia (if suspected to be part of a bioterrorist event or part of an outbreak), or any suspected bio-terrorist threat or event.

Diseases Requiring Notification within 24 Hours

Class I(b)

The following diseases shall be reported as soon as possible during normal business hours, but within 24 hours, (i.e., within 8 regularly scheduled business hours after identifying the case) to the local health authorities, who shall then report to the Illinois Department of Public Health:  Botulism (infant, wound, and other), Brucellosis (not suspected to be a bio-terrorist event), Chicken Pox, Cholera, Escherichia coli infections, Haemophilus influenzae or meningitis, Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, Hemolytic uremic syndrome, Hepatitis A, Influenza admissions into intensive care unit, Measles, Mumps, Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB), Neisseria meningitidis, outbreaks of public health significance (foodborne/waterborne), Pertussis (i.e., whooping cough),  Q-fever due to Coxiella burnetii, Rabies, Rubella, Smallpox  (complication of vaccination), Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections, Group A Streptococcal infections, Tularemia (if not suspected to be part of a bioterrorist event or part of an outbreak), Typhoid fever, and Typhus.

Class II

The following diseases shall be reported as soon as possible during normal business hours, but within seven days, to the local health authority, which shall then report to the Illinois Department of Public Health: Arboviral infections, Campylobacteriosis, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, Cryptosporidiosis, Cyclosporiasis,  Hepatitis B, C, or D, Histoplasmosis, Influenza death in persons less than 18 years, Legionellosis, Leprosy, Leptospirosis, Listeriosis, Malaria, Psittacosis, Salmonellosis, Shigellosis, Streptococcus pneumonia in children less than 5 years, Toxic shock syndrome, Tetanus, Tickborne diseases, Trichinosis, Vibriosis, and Yersinosis.

Restrictions

Employees, students, and visitors with identified communicable diseases may work or attend college whenever, through reasonable accommodation, the risk of transmission of the disease (illness) or the risk of further injury is sufficiently remote.

The College President, or designee, may decide that because an employee or student with a communicable disease may pose a serious health risk to others, they are not permitted to attend work or classes or participate in College activities with other employees or students. The President, or designee, shall notify the employee or student of the restriction and provide guidance from the Department of Health. After receiving notification, the employee or student shall be entitled to due process through normal grievance procedures.

Before an employee or student is allowed to return to work or resume academic activities, the employee or student must provide a note from a clinic, the applicable Department of Health, and/or physician that they no longer pose a risk (non-communicable) for their own health, safety, welfare, or that of others with whom they come in contact.

Responsibilities

The Senior Director of Emergency Management and the Assistant Vice President of Student Services and Development/Dean of Students will ensure that communicable disease educational outreach programs are developed to provide employees and students with appropriate factual material regarding disease matters and precautions.

There may be incidents which arise on the College campus that will require an institutional response to employees and students. Any institutional response will protect individual confidentiality and will be based on medical advice. Institutional response discussion should include the President, Senior Director of Emergency Management, Assistant Vice President of Student Services and Development/Dean of Students, and the Executive Director of Communications. This group will seek appropriate medical advice and discuss with the Vice President of Teaching, Learning and Student Development and the Vice President of Business and Finance. Confidentiality will be maintained at all times. The President, or designee, will review the issues and will determine the appropriate action for the College.

The Senior Director of Emergency Management Safety Committee Director will work with Operations and Maintenance to ensure that appropriate precautions are implemented to minimize the risk of further exposure in the spread of communicable diseases. This will include special attention to custodial and public safety employees.