St. Louis County hiring contact tracers to help control COVID-19 pandemic

The St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) is hiring contact tracers. They work with COVID-19 patients to identify people who were in close contact with the patient and thus were exposed to the novel coronavirus. DPH then reaches out to those contacts to notify them of the potential exposure.

Contact tracing is important because it helps quickly identify potential new cases and, more importantly, prevents further spread of COVID-19. Guidance and precautionary measures are given to those who may have been exposed to the virus, which include monitoring their symptoms closely, staying at home, and continuing to practice good hand hygiene.

The process of contact tracing also supports those suspected or confirmed of being infected. Individuals are provided with educational materials to understand their risk and given direction on how best to protect their family and others who were not exposed. They are also connected with medical professionals who can clarify instructions and answer questions related to COVID-19.

Contract tracing is an essential component to pandemic control. In fact, widespread testing and aggressive contract tracing are needed to lift the more restrictive public health orders current in place in St. Louis city and county.

Those interested should also have a general understanding of basic medical terminology, infectious disease processes, and patient confidentiality laws. Excellent interpersonal and interviewing skills are also beneficial – or “inquisitive and investigative personalities,” as the county says in a release.

According to the county website, preferred candidates also will be able to:

  • Exhibit an ability to speak, read, and write English (second or multiple languages could be advantageous).
  • Exhibit sound critical thinking and judgment skills.
  • Exhibit the ability to handle confidential information with discretion and professionalism.
  • Exhibit proficiency with computers and software programs.
  • Have a flexible schedule and be available on weekends and evenings.

The stated wage is $15 per hour.

For more information on working as a contact tracer or to apply, visit http://ow.ly/nXqu50zqOmm or call 314-615-5182.

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