Thurston CountyOlympia 98506
Full Time
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Communicable Disease Epidemiologist

Thurston County
Full Time 412 Lilly Rd NE, Olympia, WA 98506, United States


This employment opportunity will remain open until filled. The Thurston County Public Health and Social Services Department reserves the right to close the recruitment at any time.  To ensure consideration for this position, please submit your application as soon as possible.

Thurston County Public Health and Social Services (PHSS) is recruiting for a

for the Disease Control and Prevention Division to ensure compliance with government standards and regulations regarding disease control.

As an important part of the team, this position will conduct contact tracing and case investigation for diseases of public health importance. The outcome includes providing information, guidance, and recommendations to individuals for decreasing the spread of diseases. This role will participate in the design and management of surveillance systems for diseases, including continuous ongoing surveillance and specialized short-term surveillance.  

Epidemiological investigations conducted will identify causative agents or conditions resulting in adverse health conditions. Then corrective actions will be proposed or initiated. This includes the compilation, maintenance, and analysis of health data and reports as well as provide public health information and consultative services to primary medical care providers, child care providers, and the general public,

This position reports to a Senior Epidemiologist.

The ideal candidate will have:
  • Bilingual communication skills in English/Spanish or English/Vietnamese 
  • Knowledge of epidemiological principles and practices, microbiology and pathophysiology
  • Possess the technical skill to ensure the quality and accuracy of data
  • Experience completing statistical analysis
  • Knowledge of public health practices, communicable diseases, and disease control
  • Ability to interpret and communicate laws, rules and regulations as they apply to the problems of disease control
  • Ability to perform research procedures including biostatistical methodology
  • An understanding of patient confidentiality, including the ability to conduct interviews without violating confidentiality
  • Excellent and sensitive interpersonal, cultural sensitivity, and interviewing skills that support building and maintaining trust with interviewees.
Working Conditions:
Perform other work as required or assigned including but not limited to a 24/7 response during public health emergency situations and disease outbreak investigations. Work will be performed largely in an office environment.

What we offer our employees:
  • Work-Life Balance: We are committed to ensure that our staff experience the reward of public service, while also sustaining a routine that suits each individual’s lifestyle. 
  • Plan For Your Future: As a member of our team, you will enjoy great employee benefits, including a retirement plan, pre-tax savings accounts, as well as comprehensive health care and dental/vision care for you and your family.  Please visit our website for more information. 
  • Paid Leave: Full-time regular employees earn a minimum of 12 paid vacation days per year in addition to 11 paid . 
  • Robust Training Program: Employees are encouraged to attend County paid training to help them further their career, learn new skill sets, and stay on top of emerging trends in our industry.  We also encourage our staff to participate in professional organizations and attend conferences.  
  • Flexible Work Schedules:  Some of the options employees may take advantage of include alternative or compressed schedules and/or remote working.
  • Deferred Compensation: The County offers 3 voluntary deferred compensation plans for employees who would like to set aside additional deferred tax dollars into a retirement savings plan. 
  • Flexible Spending Account (FSA): Employees can take advantage of Section 125 flexible spending accounts for out-of-pocket health care and daycare expenses with pre-tax dollars.
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness:  This is a federal program which allows full-time public service employees who have made 120 qualifying payments for certain loans, to get their student loans repaid.  .

Why you’ll love it here: 
Thurston County is located between Seattle and Portland in Western Washington’s South Puget Sound Region. Perched in between the mountains and the ocean, the area boasts the perfect blend of year-round outdoor activities including boating, hiking, skiing, and more. The region is also home to the state capitol city of Olympia, known for its many restaurants, microbreweries, coffee shops, farmer’s markets, kids’ activities, history, and art events. Discover more about life in Thurston County at .  
  • Bachelor of Science in Public Health, statistics, or closely related field.
  • Three years professional-level experience in a health or medical environment, specifically in applying epidemiological principles and practices including the symptoms, causes, means of transmission and methods of control of communicable and chronic diseases.
  • Ability to use computer database management and statistical software.
  • Valid Washington State Driver's License.
Desired Skills
  • Respect and Organizational Culture:
    • Create an environment where employees and partners can safely express needs or issues and where employees can make and correct mistakes
    • Effectively interact with sensitivity with persons from diverse cultural, socioeconomic, educational, racial, ethnic, and professional backgrounds, and persons of all ages, gender identities, sexual orientations, and lifestyles
    • Thrive in a fast paced, robust organization maintaining a positive work environment
  • Communication:
    • Serve the public in a timely, complete, accurate, and professional manner ensuring messages received are clearly understandable
    • Maintain cultural competency to support diverse perspectives in developing, implementing, and evaluating policies, programs, and services that affect the health of the community
    • Strong oral communication for networking, interpersonal relationships, and effective presentations to a wide range of groups
    • Excellent written communication including the ability to craft correspondence, reports, grant proposals, speeches, and articles with minimal grammatical and syntax errors
  • Goal Setting and Accomplishment:
    • Use strategic thinking and planning for goal setting and evaluation
    • Effectively plan, organize, and manage competing priorities and challenges under pressure
    • Create a sense of mission by articulating and modeling confidentiality, professional values, and ethics with honesty and integrity
    • Operate with a high degree of flexibility, initiative, attention to detail, and commitment
    • Delegate and use persuasion and negotiating skills for shared responsibility and acceptance of change