Once someone is diagnosed with COVID-19, it is essential that the people they have had contact with are identified in order to help prevent further spread of the virus.
DHS has worked with local and tribal health departments to build a network of contact tracers to interview every person with a confirmed case of COVID-19. This network has been successful in helping Wisconsinites follow isolation and quarantine guidance, but the spread of COVID-19 in Wisconsin has advanced to the point where they need your help.
Let your contacts know
If you test positive for COVID-19, get in touch with the people you've been in close contact with and encourage them to quarantine and get tested. By doing this, you stop the spread of this virus and keep the people you care about safe. If you test positive and are unsure who your close contacts are, you can use this information to help you decide whom you should contact.
What to expect when you get a call from a contact tracer
All contact tracing team members have received training in and demonstrated understanding of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Wisconsin Electronic Disease Surveillance System (WEDSS). WEDSS is the secure system that handles the reporting, investigation, and monitoring of the information we receive.
Our contact tracers take you through isolation and quarantine recommendations, ask how you are feeling, and sign you up for self-monitoring.
Unfortunately, with any major event there are always bad actors who want to take advantage of the situation. DHS wants you to feel comfortable if you get a call from one of our contact tracers. Here’s what to expect:
- Our staff will always identify themselves as representatives of the state or a local public health department and verify who they are talking with on the call—before they even begin to talk about contact tracing.
- Once they verify who they are speaking with is the right person, they will explain why they are calling.
- While our contact tracer will say you have been exposed, they won’t identify the person they were in contact with or where it might have happened.
We will never ask you for credit card, bank account numbers, or Social Security numbers. Here are the things they will ask you for:
- Your name
- Your address
- Your phone
- Your email
- Your gender
- Your race/ethnicity
- Whether you have any symptoms