Part 3 SPublic health investigations

Public health investigationsS

20Public health incidentsS

(1)A public health incident exists if—

(a)a circumstance mentioned in subsection (2), (3), (4), (5) or (6) occurs; and

(b)there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the circumstance is likely to give rise to a significant risk to public health.

(2)The first circumstance is that—

(a)a person has an infectious disease; or

(b)there are reasonable grounds to suspect that a person has such a disease.

(3)The second circumstance is that—

(a)a person has been exposed to an organism which causes infectious disease; or

(b)there are reasonable grounds to suspect that a person has been so exposed.

(4)The third circumstance is that—

(a)a person is contaminated; or

(b)there are reasonable grounds to suspect that a person is contaminated.

(5)The fourth circumstance is that—

(a)a person has been exposed to a contaminant; or

(b)there are reasonable grounds to suspect that a person has been so exposed.

(6)The fifth circumstance is that—

(a)any premises are or any thing in or on premises is infected, infested or contaminated; or

(b)there are reasonable grounds to suspect that any premises are or thing is so infected, infested or contaminated.

(7)In subsection (6), “infected”, “infested” and “contaminated” have the meanings given by section 72(5).

21Public health investigationsS

(1)In this Part, a “public health investigation” means an investigation into the cause (or causes) of a public health incident.

(2)A public health investigation may be carried out by a person appointed for the purpose by—

(a)the Scottish Ministers;

(b)a health board competent person;

(c)the common services agency;

(d)a local authority competent person;

(e)two or more of the persons mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (d) acting together,

and, in this Part, that person is known as an “investigator”.

(3)Despite subsection (2)(b) and (d), a health board competent person or a local authority competent person may be appointed as an investigator.

(4)If an investigator considers it necessary for the purpose of, or in connection with, a public health investigation, the investigator may, subject to section 25(1), exercise—

(a)the powers relating to entry to premises mentioned in section 22;

(b)the other investigatory powers mentioned in section 23; and

(c)the power to ask questions mentioned in section 24.