What You Need to Know About Contact Tracing
Covid-19 Contact Tracing
As your local health department, part of our role is to help stop the spread of diseases that can impact your family. Today, that includes COVID-19.
You may have heard about contact tracing recently in the news or on social media, but we wanted to make sure you had the facts. Below you’ll discover what you can expect and how you can play a vital part in stopping the spread of the Coronavirus.
What is Contact Tracing?
Kentucky is implementing Contact Tracing to help stop the spread of diseases like COVID-19 and help Kentuckians stay healthy and safe. Contact Tracing is key to safely get back to work while also kickstarting the economy.
Public Health workers reach out to individuals who have COVID-19 to assess their situation, provide helpful resources, and ask about any recent in-person contacts who may have been exposed to the disease. Instructions are provided about how to stop spreading the disease and what to do until they recover.
Recent in-person contacts are notified that they may have been exposed to COVID-19 and are offered instructions and connected to local resources.
Individuals receive follow-up calls to see how they are doing and gather any new information.
By following the instructions provided by Public Health workers, contacts help stop the spread of COVID-19 and save the lives of Kentuckians.
This is part of an existing process used by the Kentucky Department for Public Health. The purpose of Contact Tracing is to reduce health risks to others and protect communities from any further exposure. Resources are provided to help both individuals who have COVID-19, as well as individuals who may have been exposed to COVID-19. All information gathered by Public Health workers is private and is not released or made public.
COVID-19 Contact Tracing FAQs:
The Kentucky Department for Public Health needs your medical information to determine your COVID-19 status and the best next steps for you. Your personal information is needed to get in touch with you and provide you with instructions and helpful resources. Information on the people you have been in contact with recently is needed so they may be told they have been exposed to COVID-19 and be provided with necessary instructions.
Yes, the information you give is kept completely private and confidential. Information regarding the individuals who have COVID-19 and people they have made in-person contact with recently is not released or made public.
Healthcare providers are required to report anyone with a positive COVID-19 lab test, or someone who is highly likely to have COVID-19, to the local health department.
If you came into contact recently with someone who has COVID-19, we received your information from them. They identified you or a place where you have been that may have potentially exposed you to COVID-19.
There are two reasons why you may be contacted: You have COVID-19 or you were recently around someone who has COVID-19 and you may have been exposed to the disease.
If you have COVID-19:
- A Public Health worker will ask how you are doing and see if there is anything you need to connect you with resources.
- A Public Health worker will explain what to do now that you have COVID- 19.
- A Public Health worker will ask for a list of people you have recently been with in-person, so we can let them know they may have been exposed to COVID-19. Your information will be kept completely private.
If you are someone who may have been exposed:
- A Public Health worker will tell you that you were potentially exposed to COVID-19.
- A Public Health worker will ask how you are feeling and see if there is anything you need to connect you with resources.
- A Public Health worker will determine next steps to take based on any symptoms you may have.
The goal of Contact Tracing is to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the community and save the lives of Kentuckians. By following instructions provided by Public Health workers, you can help keep your loved ones and people you know from getting sick.
There are many benefits. They include:
Help stop the spread of COVID-19 from your loved ones and your community.
Gain access to resources you may need during this time including:
How to get tested and where.
What to do if you get COVID-19.
How to get food during self-isolation.
Get answers from a Public Health worker.
Your information will be kept completely private and only used for public health purposes. We do not release confidential information to the public.
If you are a person with COVID-19, any people you name as potential contacts will not be told who they were exposed to. This means we are keeping your information private.
If you are a contact:
Nothing you say will be told to the person who has COVID-19.
Your personal information will not be released.
Your symptoms and disease status will be used to make sure you get better, and that the disease does not spread any further.