Communicable Disease Services
Some diseases pose a public health threat because they can be spread from person to person and cause significant health problems, even death, if untreated. The Communicable Disease Program focuses on identifying and treating sexually transmitted disease services, tuberculosis (TB) and HIV/AIDS.
Tennessee public health laws give the Tennessee Department of Health responsibility for implementing regulations for the control of communicable disease in Tennessee. The Knox County Health Department is responsible for carrying out these requirements.
SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES
Free and confidential testing, treatment, and educational services are available for the following STDs: gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis. Disease intervention specialists, in the interest of prevention and control of STDs, do contact follow-up. Upon request, information on any STD can be provided.
STD testing is available at the Main Health Department in the Communicable Disease Clinic, Monday through Friday between 8:00 and 3:30 p.m. Again, all testing is FREE and CONFIDENTIAL. Patients are seen on a walk-in bases. No appointment is necessary.
The TB program provides services for the risk assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of tuberculosis, including tuberculin tests (TB skin tests), chest x-rays, laboratory examinations, medications, and hospitalization if necessary. Prevention services are provided through TB education, contact examination for early detection, and preventive medication for latent TB infection.
TB risk assessments are free for all individuals. TB risk assessments and testing are available at the Main Health Department in the Communicable Disease Clinic Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. TB skin tests are free to high-risk persons (as determined by the risk assessment) and $10.00 for all others.
Free and confidential HIV counseling, testing, case management, and care is available at the Main Health Department. HIV Prevention Health Educators also housed within this department. HIV counseling and testing is available in the Communicable Disease Clinic, while HIV/AIDS case management and care are provided in the Centers of Excellence at the Main Health Department.
HIV COUNSELING AND TESTING
Certified HIV counselors provide HIV counseling and testing on a FREE and CONFIDENTIAL basis. Persons who test positive for HIV are provided contact notification and follow-up services by Disease Intervention Specialists. They are also referred to the Medical Care Managers within the Centers of Excellence case management services.
Professional outreach staff provides appropriate and accurate HIV interventions targeted to populations that increase knowledge of personal risk, encourage practices to prevent HIV transmission, and increase HIV testing. Educational materials, brochures, and pamphlets are also appropriately distributed.
HIV CASE MANAGEMENT
HIV Case Managers are available to assist persons with HIV infection in identifying community resources based on an individual's needs. These can include everything from healthcare programs to housing.
CENTERS OF EXCELLLENCE
The Centers of Excellence (COE) specialty clinic requires a referral from the patient's primary care physician (PCP). Patients are seen by an infectious diseases specialist who can provide care specific to HIV infection.
Currently, the COE Clinic operates by appointment in the afternoon on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursdays.
The COE Clinic serves adult (18 years and older) residents in Knox County and the East Tennessee Region (15 counties that surround Knox County) who are on TennCare, Knox County Indigent Care Program, or are Ryan White eligible. Due to capacity issues and availability of care elsewhere, the clinic is not able to serve those who have private insurance or Medicare.
Additionally, a registered dietician provides nutritional counseling if needed. Pharmacy counseling is also provided, if needed.
Finally, Medical Care Managers are available within the clinic to "link" patients to other services.
- Communicable Disease Clinic: 215-5370
- HIV Case Management: 215-5395
- Centers of Excellence: 215-5080