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How Iowa Is Handling Contact Tracing For COVID-19

Mika Baumeister
Health officials have encouraged social distancing and wearing masks in public to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

As Iowa opens up, health experts say there are three legs to managing this virus: testing, tracing and isolation. Experts say it’s not enough to test, and that it's important to contact those who potentially may have been exposed to the virus so they can isolate. This is known as contact tracing.

Morning Edition host Clay Masters talks with IPR health reporter Natalie Krebs about how the state and local health departments are handling contact tracing.

Editor's note: Since this morning's broadcast, Johnson County has clarified that it currently has nine contact tracers on staff that are listed as bilingual. The county has clarified that it interpreted an inquiry from IPR about its number of bilingual contact tracers to refer only to the contact tracers it is hiring under contract for COVID-19, and its response did not include the number of bilingual contact tracers it currently has on staff.

Natalie Krebs is IPR's Health Reporter
Clay Masters is Iowa Public Radio’s Morning Edition host and lead political reporter.