Saratoga County virus spike challenging public health system

WNYT Staff
Created: December 08, 2020 07:31 PM

Saratoga County has seen their coronavirus cases increase by 145% in the last two weeks.

As a result, contact tracing is being prioritized with county officials saying the spike is challenging both the labs and the public health system.

This is a story NewsChannel 13 has been working on for a few days, as our reporter Jacquie Slater is home recovering from the virus and she herself never received a call from the Saratoga County Health Department after she tested positive last week.

Saratoga County reported 372 active cases of the coronavirus on November 24.

That number was up to 854 on December 7.

County officials say they currently have close to two-dozen contact tracers who are making about 1,000 calls a day, but at this point they can't follow up with every positive case.
 

NewsChannel 13 learned residents in several Saratoga County towns never got a call from the Health Department even though they were told they would when they received their test results.

The county says they are actively working on getting more contact tracers.

Dr. Daniel Kuhles is the county's new public health commissioner, and he says the changes they are making with contact tracing are based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and the New York State Department of Health.

Prior to the commissioner making himself available, Jacquie spoke with several local leaders as well as people who have tested positive for COVID.

Her full investigation into contact tracing concerns will air Wednesday.

Meanwhile, hear more about some of the changes being made to contact tracing by watching the video of Benita Zahn's story.


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