- Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services (PHHS) has modified the case investigation and contact tracing process for COVID-19. This change is in response to the increased number of cases recorded in Boone County. This process began Tuesday, Nov. 17.
PHHS will now focus on contacting the most recent individuals who have tested positive. Due to this change, PHHS will no longer report the timeframe residents should expect to be contacted by PHHS.
There are currently 15 full time COVID-19 case investigators that were funded by the CARES Act. Additional PHHS and MU staff also help conduct case investigations when their other work duties allow. The team of disease investigators can manage about 80 new COVID-19 cases per weekday, but in the last two weeks Boone County has recorded nearly twice that number on a daily basis. Case investigations are also conducted over the weekends on a more limited basis. By prioritizing those who have most recently tested positive we have the greatest impact on isolating those causes, quarantining their contacts and reducing the transmission of the virus.
Due to the influx in COVID-19 cases, it is possible that Boone County residents will not be contacted by phone from a PHHS case investigator. Those who are not contacted by phone will be sent a packet of information via the United States Postal Service (USPS). This packet will include instructions on isolation for the person who is infected with COVID-19, and self-reporting release from isolation information, and quarantine instructions for infected individuals to give to their close contacts. The department will ask that the individual notify each of their close contacts and share the quarantine information that will be included in the packet.
All Boone County residents can also access isolation and quarantine instructions on the PHHS website, www.como.gov/health/novel-coronavirus-2019-covid-19/. Anyone who has questions regarding COVID-19 can also reach out to PHHS by emailing email@example.com
or by calling 573.874.7355.