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Cayuga County Health Department leaves contact tracing up to school districts now

The Cayuga County Health Department says it will no longer handle contact tracing for COVID-19 cases in schools.

The Citizen reports the move came about after a meeting between county health officials and school Superintendents. Health Director Kathleen Cuddy says the health department will handle contract tracing in schools only in special circumstances. Schools will still notify families when students test positive and must still be aware of when students, faculty and staff are in quarantine or isolation.

School officials say the county had to handle so many cases, it sometimes took days before students testing positive could be notified. It was the Superintendents who asked to take over control of the process during a virtual meeting on Tuesday. The Superintendents say the availability of rapid tests will make it easier to handle contact tracing.

About 20% of positive test results in the county since September 1 have come in schools.