Infectious Diseases
Topic write up

MedlinePlus logoDiscover MedlinePlus

MedlinePlus is a service of the National Library of Medicine, the largest biomedical library in the world. Use anywhere, anytime, on any device - for free - to discover high-quality health and wellness information that is reliable, easy to understand, and free of advertising, in both English and Spanish.

Discover information on:


Also discover to learn how to Prevent Infections When You Get Medical Care.

Discover NIH

NIH LogoThe National Institutes of Health (NIH), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the nation’s medical research agency — making important discoveries that improve health and save lives. NIH is made up of 27 Institutes and Centers, each with a specific research agenda, often focusing on particular diseases or body systems.

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is the primary NIH organization for research on Infectious Diseases.  

Discover More

Many diseases become difficult to control if infectious agents evolve resistance to commonly used drugs. Scientists are currently searching for new approaches to treat infectious diseases, focusing on exactly how the pathogens change and drug resistance evolves.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the national health agency responsible for American lives by securing global health, ensuring domestic preparedness, eliminating disease, and ending epidemics.  

National Foundation for Infectious Diseases is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to educating the public and health care professionals about the burden, causes, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of infectious diseases across the lifespan.

Share the Latest COVID-19 Information

The purpose of the Coronavirus Self-Checker is to help people living in the United States make decisions about seeking appropriate medical care. The system is not intended for the diagnosis or treatment of disease or other conditions, including COVID-19. Embed the CDC widget on your library website. The widget is available in a variety of languages and format styles.

The virus causing coronavirus disease in 2019 (COVID-19) is SARS-CoV-2. It's a novel or new coronavirus that has not been previously identified. It is not the same as the coronaviruses that commonly circulate among humans and cause mild illness, like the common cold. The novel virus presents many different symptoms. Some are so mild that you may not even notice any symptoms, while others are life-threatening.

COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation. Take steps to help your community learn and protect itself from spreading the virus. Get the latest public health information from and For the latest research information from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), visit

Image to of spray bottle and handShow the Science

"Hands-on" activities help raise awareness of how germs and viruses are transmitted. The aim of Handshake Hazard is to raise awareness of the transmission of bacteria and to show how easily germs can spread from person to person and on different surfaces. The key message is that thorough hand washing can reduce the spread of bacteria.


CDC poster Wash Your Hands

Ready-to-use printable posters from the CDC can help raise awareness about hand washing. Place them in highly visible public areas, such as schools, workplaces, and restrooms. They are designed for all audiences, and some are available in multiple sizes and languages.

English: 11×17 pdf icon [PDF – 523K]
Spanish: 11×17 pdf icon [PDF – 484K]
French: 11×17 pdf icon [PDF – 1.5M]
Arabic: 11×17 pdf icon [PDF – 1.5M]
Bengali: 11×17 pdf icon [PDF – 1.5M]
Chinese: 11×17 pdf icon [PDF – 1.5M]
Portuguese: 11×17 pdf icon[PDF – 1.5M]
Urdu: 11×17 pdf icon [PDF – 1.5M]
Haitian Creole: 11 x 17 pdf icon [PDF – 470K]

    Featured Books
    Title: A Song for a New Day
    Author Sarah Pinsker
    Publisher Berkley Press
    Year published 2019
    Book image Song for a New Day book cover
    Title: Severance
    Author Ling Ma
    Publisher Farrar, Straus and Giroux
    Year published 2019
    Book image Severance book cover
    Title: The Murmur of Bees
    Author Sofía Segovia
    Publisher AmazonCrossing
    Year published 2019
    Book image The Murmur of Bees book cover

    Terms of use: Network of the National Library of Medicine (NNLM) staff offer these health discussion resources for educational use. The materials included do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the author, publisher, or the sponsoring agencies of the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).