COVID-19 & Contact Tracing
Contact tracing is critical to slowing the spread of COVID-19.
DeKalb County Health Department (DCHD) Contact Tracers and Case Investigators reach out to individuals who have COVID-19 and their close contacts. Through these calls, they ensure that anyone who has COVID-19 and their close contacts, have the necessary information and support to isolate and quarantine safely.
Please do your part; answer the call and provide our staff with all the information needed to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in DeKalb County.
What is contact tracing?
Contact tracing is a long-established, proven health practice that has helped save countless lives. Public health workers reach out to people who tested positive and their close contacts to provide health guidance, answer questions, and offer support. It helps protect you and those closest to you.
How does contact tracing work?
Contact tracing involves:
- Reaching out to people with COVID-19 to identify everyone they had close contact with during the time they may have been infectious
- Notifying contacts of their potential exposure
- Referring those contacts for testing
- Monitoring contacts for signs and symptoms of COVID-19
- Connecting contacts with services they might need to remain at home during the self-quarantine period
What happens on a contact tracing call?
If you test positive for COVID-19 or were in close contact with someone who did, you’ll get a call from IL COVID HELP (312-777-1999). That’s one of the public health workers. Answering is extremely important, as it helps us do contact tracing effectively. During the call, they will:
- Determine who you’ve had close contact with recently
- Answer your questions and help alleviate any concerns
- Offer you additional support and resources
- We will NEVER ask for money, bank account information, social security numbers or immigration status
Who is considered a close contact?
A close contact is someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days before getting tested) until the time the patient is isolated.