Every minute counts when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19. The virus spreads easily from person to person, even when an infected person doesn’t have symptoms. That’s why the Lake County Health Department uses contact tracing to identify and notify people who may have been exposed to COVID-19.
If you test positive for COVID-19, or you have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, expect a call from the Health Department. Do your part—answer the call.
If you test positive for COVID-19, the Health Department will contact you. During the call a public health worker will:
Once the Health Department has the information needed, we will reach out to your close contacts to inform them that they were exposed, help them get tested, and stay safe. Contact tracing helps us save lives. People can quarantine and get tested to protect their loved ones and receive the medical care that they need.
Be sure to follow the advice of public health staff. If a contact tracer suggests that you get tested, please do so as soon as possible.
While you wait for your results:
During an outbreak, our teams work closely with the affected location and infected individuals to stop the spread. Calls or texts may at times come from a different phone number. If you receive a call or text from a contact tracer, please respond right away.
Lake County officials are warning residents of contact tracing scams where criminals pretend to be contact tracers to steal vital information like social security numbers and banking information over the phone, via email, and text message.
If you receive a suspicious call, text message, or email about contact tracing or exposure to COVID-19, you may call the Health Department’s Communicable Disease program at (847) 377-8130. Staff can help verify if you have been contacted by the Health Department.
If you believe you have been a victim of a contact tracing scam, please call the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office at (847) 377-3000, or your local police department.
Contact tracing is a long-established, public health practice that has helped save countless lives. Public health workers reach out to people who tested positive as well as their close contacts. Contact tracers answer questions, offer guidance, and provide resources
The Lake County Health Department, as well as health departments around the world, have been using contact tracing successfully for decades to prevent the spread of infectious diseases, such as Ebola and HIV/AIDS. The COVID-19 pandemic affecting billions worldwide has put this little-known health practice on the global stage.
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.
Your private health information is secured and always kept completely confidential. No sensitive data like social security numbers is collected. We don’t exchange information with anyone, including law enforcement, credit collection, or immigration agencies. And, your name won’t be revealed to others, even your close contacts.