About this item

Issue date:
22 December 2022
Corporate Authors:
Manatū Hauora - Ministry of Health, Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand
Document date:
30 May 2012
Diseases & conditions
978-1-98-853947-8 (online)


This manual describes standard practice for public health services to follow for the prevention and control of notifiable diseases (ie, the specific communicable diseases that are required to be notified by medical practitioners and laboratories under the Health Act 1956). It is intended chiefly for those at the frontline of public health action – medical officers of health, health protection officers and staff at public health units.

Most of the information is contained within disease-specific chapters (see below). These include case definitions and laboratory tests required for case confirmation, along with references and links to more information. Some important general considerations are outlined in their own chapters and in the appendices.

The disease-specific chapters are intended to be reviewed and updated separately in accordance with new evidence and best practice. 

Use this manual in conjunction with other best practice guidelines, such as the Immunisation Handbook, and with effective existing local-level practices. We encourage those with effective evidence-based local practices to bring them forward for broader consideration and possible incorporation in this manual.

While the protocols set out in the manual reflect normal expectations, they may require adaptation in particular circumstances (eg, in a significant outbreak or epidemic). This should be determined based on the professional judgement of the local medical officer of health.

Please send feedback to info@health.govt.nz.