Disease Surveillance and Epidemiology Mission and Overview of Related Branches


Our mission is to prevent and control communicable diseases by:

  • Promoting epidemiology, surveillance, education, risk stratification/communication, consultation, and disease interventions;
  • Building strong partnerships within DSHS (central and regional) and with local, state and federal partners; and
  • Supporting the mission of the Texas Department of State Health Services.


Disease Surveillance and Epidemiology is responsible for assisting local or regional public health officials in investigating outbreaks of acute infectious disease or any report of isolated cases or rare or unusual disease, such as plague, cholera, or botulism. The program conduct routine and special morbidity surveillance of diseases designated as reportable.

The section is composed of the Emerging & Acute Infectious Disease Unit (EAIDU), the Healthcare Safety Unit and the Zoonosis Control Branch (ZCB).

Related Divisions, Sections, and Units

  • Cancer Registry
    Maintains a population-based cancer incidence reporting system that collects, analyzes and disseminates information on all new cases of cancer.
  • Center for Health Statistics
    Population Data, County and Regional Health Facts, County Rankings, Migration for Birth, Hospital Survey, Health Professions Resource Center.
  • Center for Public Health Preparedness & Response (CPHPR)
    Provides strategic leadership and direction to ensure public health preparedness for bioterrorism, natural epidemics, and other public health threats and emergencies in Texas.
  • Chronic Disease and Tobacco Prevention
    The goal of the Chronic Disease and Tobacco Prevention is the reduction of costly disability and premature death due to chronic diseases and injuries such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis, Alzheimer's Disease and traffic accidents.
  • Environmental Epidemiology and Toxicology Division
    Their mission is to use the methods of epidemiology and toxicology to understand and prevent toxic exposures and illnesses, identify people at risk, and promote actions to protect them.
  • Epidemiology
    Applies the principles and techniques of Epidemiology to a variety of public health concerns.
  • Hansen's Disease
    The mission of the Hansen's Disease Program is to improve the understanding and control of Hansen's disease in order to achieve the eventual eradication of this condition and its complications from Texas.
    Information on prevention and care in Texas. Find out about HIV/STD testing and service delivery programs in your area, access HIV/STD statistics for Texas, or learn more about eligibility requirements for the Texas HIV Medication Program.
  • Health Facility Licensing and Compliance
    Information for licensing and certifying hospitals and for licensing crisis stabilization units, including Hospital Directories.
  • Immunization Unit
    Contains information on the Division, an electronic edition of the newsletter Upshot, information on the automated immunization tracking system ImmTrac, surveillance and epidemiology, and more.
  • Laboratories Services Section
    Assist communities in the realization of their best possible health by providing to the residents of Texas and other customers analytical, research, training, and educational services which are high quality, efficient, and cost-effective.
  • Local Health Departments and Districts of Texas, Full Service
    Full Service Local Health Departments and Districts of Texas, formerly known as, State-Participating Local Health Departments and Public Health Districts.
  • Local Health Departments, Texas Non-participating
    Texas Non-participating Local Health Departments.
  • Medical & Research Library
    With over 250 links, the Library guides you to electronic journals, government resources, health associations, access to Medline, other health libraries, general reference sites, Internet search engines, health information, and statistics.
  • Newborn Screening
    All infants born in Texas are mandated by state law to be screened for five genetic disorders, Phenylketonuria (PKU), Galactosemia, Congenital Hypothyroidism, Sickle Hemoglobin, and Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia.
  • Regional and Local Health Services
    Serving the needs of Local Public Health Agencies, DSHS Public Health Regions, and local communities in building and maintaining capacity to provide essential public health services responsive to local needs.
  • Texas Center for Disease Control (TCID)
    Provides inpatient services for patients with Tuberculosis (TB) and out patient services for patients with Hansen's Disease.
  • Tuberculosis Program
    Prevent, control, and eliminate tuberculosis among the people of Texas.
  • Vital Statistics Annual Report Tables
    On-line reports published by the Center for Health Statistics.
  • Zoonosis Program
    Dedicated to the control of zoonoses, which are infectious diseases transmitted from animals to humans.