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May 29, 2024

IDPH green lights release of information – First responders can be informed of positive COVID-19 persons addresses

By Kirk Allen & John Kraft

On April 11, 2020

Illinois (ECWd) –

While the McHenry County Sheriff pursues a lawsuit against his county health department for the release of the names and addresses of those testing positive for the China virus COVID-19, the Illinois Department of Public Health has done a reversal of their initial position.

“The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is issuing this guidance to set forth the appropriate process for local health departments (LHD) to follow when disclosing information to first responders, including law enforcement and emergency management services departments, regarding the addresses of persons who have tested positive for COVID-19. As stated in IDPH’s guidance provided on April 2, 2020, the Office of the Attorney General for the State of Illinois has advised that disclosure of addresses may be permissible under certain circumstances. An LHD may exercise its discretion to disclose address information about persons who have tested positive for COVID-19 to first responders. It is strongly recommended that such disclosure be communicated directly from the LHD’s executive officer to the first responder entity’s chief, sheriff, superintendent, director, or individual in a comparable position. This process is crucial given the sensitive and confidential nature of this information. It is further recommended that LHDs not require individuals other than those within its leadership to transmit such information.”

A copy of the current position IDPH is taking can be downloaded at this link or viewed below.

OK to relase IDPH position

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