San Diego can't keep up with contact tracing efforts during surge

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San Diego County is having trouble keeping up with contact tracing efforts as cases increase in the region, according to a local KPBS report.

Three things to know:

1. The county has around 500 contact tracers who are responsible for identifying and notifying people who were in contact with an individual that tested positive for COVID-19. There are 17,000 known positive cases in the county, but tracers have only contacted 9,000 residents in contact with individuals who tested positive since March.

2. The contact tracers do not know whether the individuals they contact went into quarantine, which is the best practice after coming in contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19.

3. In late June, the county reported that the percentage of cases they are able to begin investigating dropped to 57 percent.

"At first, San Diego County and the state were saying it was a very high priority to have a robust contact tracing program," said UC San Diego epidemiologist Andrea LaCroix, PhD, in the KPBS report. "It turns out to be much more difficult than they thought to standardize programs across the state and sew together different institutions."


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