The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has announced that as of February 1st, COVID-19 contact outreach and monitoring, otherwise known as contact tracing, operations will be discontinued. County Local Health Departments have already begun to wind down contact tracing and K-12 schools who were participating in contact tracing as part of the Test to Stay program may temporarily suspend contact tracing as well. The decision to end contact outreach and monitoring was made due to the surge in the amount of positive COVID-19 cases and the public's willingness to participate has diminished since the beginning of the pandemic.
Individuals who are positive for COVID-19 will now be responsible for letting their close contacts know about their potential exposure. Additionally, if the individual with COVID-19 exposed others at high-risk settings such as schools, correctional facilities, long-term care facilities, homeless shelters, daycares, and churches, KDHE or the local health department will notify the setting.
KDHE still encourages people to get vaccinated and boosted, wear a mask, get tested, stay home if exposed or sick, practice social distancing and practice good hand hygiene.