Local COVID Contact Tracing Now Optional In New York
Published: January 14th, 2022

By MARINA VILLENEUVE Associated Press

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York will no longer require local health departments to conduct contact tracing for people who test positive for COVID-19, state health officials said Tuesday.

The shift will help public health staff across New York focus on testing and vaccination, Health Commissioner Mary Bassett said.

"The big change for New Yorkers is that if you test positive, you should no longer expect a call from your health department," Bassett said during a virtual appearance at an in-person news conference in New York City.

And Gov. Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, said the spike in COVID-19 cases complicates contact tracing, which involves calling those who test positive to identify exposed people.

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