COVID-19 contact tracers work to slow disease spread

MaryLue Galligar (left) and Tana Waller are nurses and contact tracers at the Malheur County Health Department. (The Enterprise/Rachel Parsons)

Rebecca Stricker, a public health nurse and contact tracer at the Malheur County Health Department, is tasked with breaking some of the scariest news someone could hear at the moment.

“(You) have been named as a contact to a positive (COVID-19) case,” Stricker tells individuals who have been exposed to the coronavirus.

In the current pandemic, contact tracing consists of identifying and notifying those who have been in close contact with an individual who has tested positive for the coronavirus. The tracing is required by the state to decrease the spread of the virus.

In Malheur County, 33 people have tested positive for the virus since the first case was discovered in late . . .