10/05/2020- In response to the current surge in COVID-19 cases, Marinette County Public Health is adjusting how contact tracing is being conducted. In the past, contact tracers would call everyone who tested positive and notify all of their close contacts of potential exposures, often resulting in dozens of phone calls for each positive case. Following the recent rapid increase in cases, contact tracers will continue to call those who test positive to advise them to isolate and they will also notify those that live with the positive case in the same household to quarantine, however, those individuals will now be asked to call their own close contacts to advise them to quarantine. People are defined as “close contacts” if they had direct physical contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19, were within 6 feet of that person for more than 15 minutes, or stayed overnight for at least one night in a household with the person. These guidelines apply whether or not the person that tested positive was symptomatic at the time. Close contacts should stay home and watch for symptoms for 14 days after they last had close contact with a confirmed case. This new approach comes from the Crisis Standards of Practice for COVID-19 Contact Tracing and Symptom Monitoring guidelines that were issued by WI Department of Health Services for local health departments during periods of increased disease activity.