Health and Wellness Services, with guidance from the local Health Department, conducts close contact tracing when students test positive for COVID-19. The purpose of contact tracing is to identify cases, limit the spread of the virus and provide appropriate care for individuals who have been exposed to the virus. When we discover that a member of our community has tested positive for the virus, we will utilize the CDC definition of close contact, which is currently any individuals within 6 feet of the infected person for more than 15 minutes. This tracing is conducted with assistance from Allegany County Department of Health. Health and Wellness Services already works closely with the Allegany County Department of Health and other local health departments.
Consistent with the Heath Insurance Portability and Accountability Act and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, as well as other privacy considerations, schools, departments and units should not communicate about COVID-19 positive cases broadly to their populations. Individuals who have been potentially exposed to the positive case will be notified through the contact tracing procedures, making broad communications unnecessary. The college will determine the release of non-identifying communications about the clusters of positive results based on approved guidelines.