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La Crosse County Health Department details contact tracing process it does for each COVID-19 positive case

(WEAU)
Published: Mar. 26, 2020 at 6:14 PM CDT
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The La Crosse County Health Department confirmed two more positive COVID-19 cases Thursday afternoon.

The 13th case is a male in his mid 60s who is experiencing mild to moderate symptoms.

The 14th case is a female in her upper 30s with moderate symptoms.

All cases in the county are not severe and do not require hospitalization.

The department also detailed the contact tracing process it does once the department is notified of a positive case.

"That conversation with the individual can last up to two hours sometimes. It's really about understanding where the individual may have come in contact with COVID-19 and that's the same process we take for all communicable diseases that are reported to the health department," said Jacquie Cutts, the public health nursing manager. "Once we understand more about when symptoms started and what those symptoms included and when that individual may have come into contact, if we can identify that, then we talk about where the individual has been and what would constitute a close contact with other people. What that means is that somebody has been within six feet of another person for an extended period of time or who would have had direct contact with secretions from their body, so that's saliva or blood or things like that."

The health department says that they then contact anyone who may have been at risk of exposure to make them aware.

It also says transparency is the department's top priority and that it will continue to provide as much information as allowed as quickly as possible to the public.