The role of Coronavirus contact tracers in Texoma

Published: Jul. 22, 2020 at 10:20 PM CDT
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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - Since the beginning of the pandemic, contact tracing has been used to track who may have been exposed to the virus. Caseworkers or sometimes called just contact tracers, these people now work around the clock with each new person that tests positive.

“We can identify where the virus is, how it’s spreading, where it’s spreading, where it’s coming from and we can really help keep the community safe,” Laci Edwards, a caseworker for Wichita County said.

Collecting the information needed to track the virus, Edwards and many others are working tirelessly with those who’ve contracted COVID-19.

“When you get a case, that case it yours until they clear and until their family and friends clear,” Edwards said.

They spend hours on the phone gathering information that helps build the web showing how cases spread.

“We can also see kind of maybe where they got the virus from and that’s the whole point of it is we’re just trying to find the virus and we’re trying to keep it all together,” Edwards said.

In Wichita County, most people that have tested positive have been receptive to the contact tracing.

“Probably 99% of the individuals that we talk to have been cooperative and we’ve had a good response with them as have their contacts,” Lou Kreidler, health director for the Wichita Falls-Wichita County Health District said.

However, what many don’t see is, their job doesn’t end with just tracking the virus.

“We make sure if they need medicine, we pick up their medicine for them. We deliver their medicine, literally anything they need,” Edwards said.

Throughout each person’s quarantine, those assigned to their cases are always just a phone call away.

“We don’t want to leave them stranded so we make sure that we do take care of these things from them from start to finish every day we check-in and touch base with them, signs, symptoms, do you need anything, any questions,” Edwards said.

READ: Where to apply to be a contact tracer

The Wichita Falls-Wichita County Health District is still looking to hire more contact tracers.

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