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Posted on: July 18, 2020

Statement Regarding Contact Tracing in Merced County

COVID-19

Recently, information was misrepresented in a statewide publication claiming Merced County is no longer conducting contact tracing in response to COVID-19. The Merced County Department of Public Health continues to conduct contact tracing as required by the State. This includes contacting all positive cases and conducting a robust contact interview including:

  1. Providing verbal instructions to isolate,
  2. Identifying the suspected source of disease exposure,
  3. Identifying all places visited during the case’s infectious period,
  4. Identifying all people in contact during the case’s infectious period,
  5. Providing information on how cases can notify people they’ve come into contact, and
  6. Providing resources and information to the cases.

Public Health also contacts affected employers when one of their employees tests positive, and resources and technical assistance are provided to these employers.

The California Department of Public Health confirmed on Thursday, July 16, 2020 that Merced County is meeting its contact tracing requirements.

In addition, Merced County is actively looking to improve upon its contact tracing abilities through the hiring of 21 new extra-help contact tracer-investigators. So far, Merced County is in the process of filling 11 of those positions with bilingual individuals. These new positions are funded by a $400,000 grant.

The Merced County Department of Public Health remains committed to providing our community with the best possible services during this difficult time. Our mission to promote, protect, and preserve healthy living and safe environments is perhaps more pertinent now than ever. As we have from the onset of this crisis, we will continue to work closely with Federal, State and local partners to identify ways to address the current situation and prepare us for future impacts.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit Merced County Department of Public Health’s resource website at www.countyofmerced.com/coronavirus.

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