Virginia HAB Task Force

The mission of the Virginia HAB Task Force is to conduct monitoring and surveillance for HAB species, to respond to and investigate HAB events, utilize scientifically relevant information to advise public health and environmental resource managers, and to communicate potential health risks to the public.

These efforts are intended to prevent human exposure to HAB organisms and their toxins which may be present in Virginia marine and fresh waterbodies.

Quick Links
HAB Task Force Response Plan – (2018)
HAB  Reporting Flow Chart
Task Force Primary Support Member Charter
Task Force Annual Meetings
HAB Task Force Poster – 2017 – Monitoring & Management of Algal Blooms in Virginia…
Recreational Advisory Guidance for Freshwater Harmful Algae Blooms (Working)
Cyanobacteria Toxins & Health Effects (coming soon)
Marine Toxins & Associated Syndromes
Universal Talking Points
Information For Working Waterfront
Virginia poison Control Center
Public Notification Templates
Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for Sampling HAB in Recreational Waters (2018)
HAB Recreational Awareness & Advisory Signs
VDH -HAB Initial Health Screening Form
One Health Harmful Algal Bloom System (OHHABS) form

The Virginia Department of Health works in cooperation with the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, Old Dominion University, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science at the College of William and Mary, to monitor Virginia’s waters for harmful algae and to prevent illness that may be caused by these organisms. This group is collectively known as the Virginia HAB Task Force and was formed in 1997.

These agencies collaboratively conduct surveillance in shellfish growing areas, estuaries, as well as coastal beaches and inland freshwater lakes and rivers. This group communicates routinely with one another and the public about HABs to facilitate awareness, discussions, and to share research findings in order to protect human health.

For questions about the HAB Task Force, please contact the VDH Division of Environmental Epidemiology at 804-864-8182.