HOUSTON – The University of Houston College of Medicine has begun training the next generation of contact trackers and disease detectives to meet the growing need to map the network of people who have been exposed to a coronavirus patient.
The free Epidemiology Corps program is part of a collaboration between the University and the health departments of Houston and Harris County.
Its goal is to help stop or reduce the spread of the virus by helping patients remember who they have been in contact with.
What is contact tracking?
Contact trackers or disease detectives help COVID-19 patients remember everyone they have had close contact with in the days leading up to the positive test result. Contact trackers will then notify those people of their possible exposure and risk and ask them to isolate themselves to reduce the spread of the virus.
Who can enroll?
University of Houston students and staff members can sign up to take this course. To register, click here.
What you will learn
- The basics of a pandemic
- The signs and symptoms of COVID-19
- Actions and requirements associated with the contact tracking process
- How to apply contact tracking protocols to a variety of health scenarios.
About the course
The free program will only be available online and will consist of 12 hours of learning. Participants will be asked to complete the course in four days.
Students will be eligible to earn course credit for taking the course and then completing internships with the Houston or Harris County Health Departments.
Will I be able to implement the training?
Between the Houston and Harris County health departments, several thousand contact trackers are expected to go to work.
The University says 4,000 contact trackers are expected to be hired in Texas in mid-May.
Other opportunities for contact tracking may be available in the Houston area in the coming weeks and months.
Copyright 2020 by KPRC Click2Houston – All rights reserved.