Health officials have long called that contact tracking – tracking and monitoring the contacts of a person infected with the coronavirus – is a key to helping stop the spread of Covid-19. However, many of the worst-affected states have yet to develop contact tracking to meet their recommendation.
In April, the National Association of County and City Health Officials estimated that communities in the United States would need 30 professionals for every 100,000 people in the community to participate in contact tracing, given the magnitude of the Covid pandemic – 19.
Now, at eight emerging Covid-19 access points across the country, there are far fewer contact trackers than that estimate, according to new data obtained by CNN from Nephron Research, an independent healthcare research firm that has been monitoring the contact tracking in all states. The latest group data report shows that as of Monday:
- Nevada has about 13 tracers per 100,000.
- Florida has about 7 tracers per 100,000.
- Arizona has about 5 tracers per 100,000.
- Idaho has about 14 tracers per 100,000.
- Texas has about 11 tracers per 100,000.
- Tennessee has about 9 tracers per 100,000.
- Georgia has about 2 tracers per 100,000.
- South Carolina has about 8 tracers per 100,000.
“Most ‘hot spot’ states fail to track,” says the Nephron Research report.
The only states in the nation that have at least 30 contact trackers per 100,000 people, according to data from Nephron Research, are:
- Utah, with about 37 tracers;
- South Dakota, with about 39;
- New York, around 49;
- North Dakota, about 46;
- Nebraska, about 38;
- Massachusetts, about 36;
- And while it is not a state, the District of Columbia has about 42.
When asked how the United States is doing with contact tracing, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, told CNN: “I don’t think we’re doing very well.”
What the experts say: Instead of tracking contacts by phone alone, communities should have “boots on the ground” and do it in person, Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in an interview with CNN’s Elizabeth Cohen who was aired on Sunday night. as part of the Aspen Ideas Festival.
Fauci pointed out that it is difficult to monitor contact with coronaviruses, since at critical points, 20% to 40% of those infected are asymptomatic, and in these cases, “contact monitoring does not work, no matter how good it is because you don’t know who you’re tracking. “