Public Safety Worker Exposure

Dallas County Health and Human Services - 2377 N. Stemmons Freeway, Dallas, TX 75207
Telephone: 214-819-2000

Public Safety Workers, i.e., emergency medical service employees, paramedics, firefighters, correctional officers, or law enforcement officers, who receive a bona fide exposure to a reportable disease in the course of employment or volunteer service may request that the Health Authority order the testing of the source person who may have exposed the PSW.



Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Public Safety Worker Exposure

  • What should I do if I’ve been exposed to a communicable disease?
    PSWs should seek immediate medical attention after an exposure and follow the post-exposure recommendations.
  • Who will notify my employer of the exposure?
    The exposed person notifies their supervisor of the event and completes paperwork for DCHHS to initiate case management.  The health department informs the designated infection control officer/risk manager of the event's significance and available test outcomes.
  • Is this notification required?
    A PSW who has reason to believe that an exposure places them at risk of a communicable disease should disclose the event for their own safety and the safety of others, as well as for the purpose of potentially qualifying for worker's compensation coverage.  
  • What is the process for testing the source person?
    DCHHS’ Communicable Disease Control division will begin the process after receiving the appropriate documentation from the PSW.
  • What documentation does DCHHS need?
    The Request to Test Source form notifies a medical facility that a Public Safety Worker was exposed to conditions favorable for communicable disease transmission and requests that they collect clinically indicated tests from a source.  This form is only needed when the source is taken to a hospital, and it should be left with the charge nurse or other care staff.  Completion of this form is not necessary if the source is not taken to a medical facility.

    A notarized affidavit submitted by the PSW is also required. The affidavit is a notarized legal statement that notifies DCHHS of the PSW's exposure; it directs us to provide any necessary testing and case management, including education and outcomes reporting as well as seeking court orders from uncooperative sources.  This document is needed with all exposures and should be submitted by the next business day following the incident.  It may be faxed to (214) 875-2580.

    For more information, call (214) 819-2004.


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