What Is Contact Tracing?
Typically performed by public health agencies, contact tracing is a process used to identify, educate and monitor people who have had close contact with an infected person. These people are at increased risk for infection and spreading the virus to others. Contact tracing helps exposed individuals understand their risk and limit further spread of the virus.
During contact tracing, patients recall everyone they had close contact with while they may have been infectious. Public health staff then warn these exposed contacts of their potential exposure as rapidly and sensitively as possible.
Contacts are provided with information about their risk, how to separate themselves from others who are not exposed, how to monitor themselves for illness and actions to take if they experience symptoms. They are also provided with community resources during periods of quarantine or self-isolation.