Gov. Holcomb Announces Contact Tracing Plan For COVID-19 Cases

Plans call for hiring at least 500 employees.

(Indianapolis, Ind.) — Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb announced a new partnership to centralize contact tracing and investigations for Hoosiers that test positive for coronavirus. 

Indiana will be partnering with Maximus alongside a Optum to significantly expand testing across the state. This move is an essential component of efforts to safely reopen Indiana. 

“As we fight the spread of COVID-19, we need the ability to rapidly contact positive patients and their close contacts to determine who else might have been exposed,” Gov. Holcomb said. “Centralizing this work will allow us to quickly identify individuals who need to be quarantined, reduce the risk of additional infections and take actions to ensure our schools, workplaces and public settings are safe.”

Contact tracing identifies individuals who have tested positive for an illness and asks questions about who they were in contact with during their infectious period, then notifies those close contacts of their exposure. 

In the past, local health departments have led this function, with assistance from the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) when requested.

“Our local health departments have been doing an incredible job with contact tracing for COVID-19, but we know that as the number of cases increases, the strain on local resources will be significant,” said State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG. “This centralized approach will free up local health departments to connect people with supportive services in their communities, help with large outbreaks in congregate settings and continue to provide other essential public health services, such as immunizations.”

Current plans call for hiring at least 500 employees, who will be trained in contact tracing and investigations by ISDH subject matter experts. The call center is expected to be up and running around May 11.

More information about COVID-19 may be found at the ISDH website at coronavirus.in.gov and the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

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