Contact Tracing Is Key To Slowing COVID-19 Spread And The State Needs Your Help Getting It Done

Nov 18, 2020

The more Kentuckians that test positive for the Coronavirus, the greater the number of people who need to be called and told to quarantine. Thousands of cases mean thousands of calls. Contact tracing is key to slowing the spread of COVID-19 but state and local health officials are stretched to their limits which is causing delays. They and the Governor are asking for your help.

On Thursday Governor Andy Beshear said “COVID is out of control. It is burning all across America. The house is on fire at this point and we need everybody not to close their eyes, close their ears, and sit in the house while it burns down on them. We need everybody to join the bucket brigade and to do what it takes to address the crisis.”

What it takes is asking individuals who test positive to become contact tracers in a sense. Judy Mattingly is the Director of the Franklin County Health Department. “At this point, it is becoming impossible for our local health departments to call each and every one of these contacts in a timely fashion,” Mattingly said speed is "necessary for contact tracing to be effective."

So if you do test positive for the virus, you are asked to call anyone you have had close contact with, which is anyone who has been within six feet of you for 15-minutes or more two days before symptoms began or before a positive COVID-19 test. The CDC says you can become infected if you are exposed to the virus for 15-minutes accumulated throughout the day. 

If you get the call you should quarantine. That means staying home for 14-days from the time you were in contact with the person who tested positive.