Department of Health offers advice on COVID testing delays

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The Missoula City County Health Department is offering advice to those seeking a COVID 19 test due to possible close contact, as there are currently delays in the process.

COVID 19 Incident Commander Cindy Farr spoke to KGVO with details.

“As we receive more and more cases and the number of close contacts per case continues to increase, we are falling behind in our contact tracing efforts,” said Farr. “Right now it takes us about four days to get our hands on close contacts after being notified, and so what we’re asking is that if you test positive for COVID it would really help us if you could let your close contacts know they are close contacts and let them know that they should be quarantined until the health department contacted them. “

Additionally, Farr said surveillance tests for asymptomatic people are also not available at this time.

“We are no longer able to do surveillance tests at the moment,” she said. “We have enough symptomatic people who need to be tested as well as people who are close contacts who want to be tested so that we can get out of quarantine more quickly, so that we no longer have the capacity to do asymptomatic tests for. the people.”

Farr said those who are fully vaccinated are affected at a much lower rate than those who are not fully vaccinated.

“We are really seeing very, very few revolutionary cases right now,” she said. “Currently, only 0.71% of our fully vaccinated residents have actually experienced a breakthrough case of COVID-19. We know it’s possible for the Delta variant to continue to spread that we may see that number increase, but we want people to know that we’re tracking this.

Farr said those who are fully vaccinated have a distinct advantage when it comes to being exposed to COVID 19.

“If you are fully vaccinated then your chances are much less likely that you will contract COVID, and also right now with CDC guidelines, fully vaccinated individuals, once we have proof of your vaccination, you won’t. not. must quarantine, ”she said. “So that’s another good reason to get vaccinated. Additionally, we still operate our Southgate Mall vaccination clinics for COVID. It’s open seven days a week and we always accept walk-in tours so we can make it super convenient for you.

Missoula County has reported 73 new cases since the last update Thursday morning.

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