Dept. of Health efforts faster COVID test results, says backlog will be fixed by Oct. 22

Local News

A spike in coronavirus cases across the state has led the Department of Health to a lengthy backlog of pending test results.

In a press release issued Tuesday evening, positive case notification has increased from 24 hours to about 72, also citing that “community spread and a lack of compliance with close contact investigations have diminished the effectiveness of contact tracing.”

To alleviate the backlog and shorten notification times, the Dept. of Health is moving 50 National Guard soldiers from contact tracing to notifying positive individuals.
The DoH says this is expected to eliminate the backlog of notifications by Thursday, October 22.

With that, close contacts will no longer be contacted by public health officials.
Positive individuals will instead be instructed to inform close contacts themselves and direct them to the NDDoH website.

The state is also building a process to send automated notifications to those who test positive for the coronavirus.

This differs from the current system that only delivers automated messages to negative individuals.

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