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The Department of Public Health (DPH or the Department) is statutorily mandated to conduct investigations as to the causes of disease and especially of epidemics, G.L. c. 111 §5, and has regulatory authority to conduct disease surveillance.  Monkeypox, the disease caused by an orthopox virus, is designated a reportable disease dangerous to the public health pursuant to GL c. 111 s. 6 and 105 CMR 300.  The Department is authorized to obtain medical records and other information necessary to carry out its responsibilities to investigate, monitor, prevent and control diseases dangerous to the public health. 105 CMR 300.191. Complete, accurate, and timely reporting of demographic data is necessary in order to determine the extent of diseases, to formulate prevention and control measures, and to ensure an equitable response.

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