Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to site content Skip directly to page options
CDC Home

Who are epidemiologists?

Epidemiologists are public health professionals who investigate causes of disease, identify people who are at risk, determine how to control or stop the spread, or prevent it from happening again.

Epidemiologists have varied professional backgrounds in public health or health care (e.g., physicians, veterinarians, nurses, or others).

What do epidemiologists do?

Like investigators at the scene of a crime, disease detectives begin by looking for clues. They systematically gather information, asking questions such as:

  • Who is sick?
  • What are their symptoms?
  • When did they get sick?
  • Where could they have been exposed?

Using statistical analysis, epidemiologists study answers to these questions to find out how a particular health problem was introduced.

Disease detectives identify new diseases that have never been seen before, such as Legionnaire's disease and SARS and the organisms that cause them.

Disease detectives use what they learn during the investigation and make recommendations to control the spread or prevent a future occurrence.

Learn more about CDC's disease detectives in the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS).

 
Contact Us:
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    1600 Clifton Rd
    Atlanta, GA 30333
  • 800-CDC-INFO
    (800-232-4636)
    TTY: (888) 232-6348
  • Contact CDC–INFO
  • Page last reviewed: August 12, 2014
  • Page last updated: August 12, 2014
  • Error processing SSI file
USA.gov: The U.S. Government's Official Web PortalDepartment of Health and Human Services
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention   1600 Clifton Road Atlanta, GA 30329-4027, USA
800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) TTY: (888) 232-6348 - Contact CDC–INFO
A-Z Index
  1. A
  2. B
  3. C
  4. D
  5. E
  6. F
  7. G
  8. H
  9. I
  10. J
  11. K
  12. L
  13. M
  14. N
  15. O
  16. P
  17. Q
  18. R
  19. S
  20. T
  21. U
  22. V
  23. W
  24. X
  25. Y
  26. Z
  27. #