COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- As Gov. Polis and the State of Colorado push for reopening of businesses, more public health officials are placing an emphasis on testing and contact tracing.
Online job listings in Colorado Springs are also showing up for positions as a "contact tracer." But what does that mean?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explains contact tracing as a measure to prevent the spread of a disease or virus.
When a patient is diagnosed with a virus like COVID-19, public health workers ask them to recall everyone with whom they have had close contact during the timeframe while they may have been infectious.
Contact tracing then begins as trained staff contacts those individuals who may have been exposed to warn them of their risk and possible symptoms. These "contacts" are provided with information and support to understand how to monitor an illness themselves and how to isolate if they show symptoms.
In Colorado, lawmakers like U.S. Senator Michael Bennet have sought resources and funding to improve the state's ability for testing and contact tracing. On May 15, the senator announced nearly $160 million from the CDC to help with these preventive measures.
“Increasing testing and contact tracing efforts is critical to saving lives and safely reopening our state’s economy," said Bennet in a statement. "I applaud the CDC for sending this money and will continue working hard to ensure Colorado has the resources and capabilities to test, treat, and respond to this public health crisis."
KRDO is reaching out to El Paso County Public Health to learn more. Check back later for updates