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Deschutes County in ‘surge capacity’ for contact tracing, outlines advice for public

Deschutes County

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Deschutes County Health Services said Thursday it is responding to a high volume of COVID-19 cases. Due to the increase in new cases, officials said the case investigation and contact tracing teams are currently not able to contact all residents who test positive for COVID-19 within 24 hours.

“Due to the recent sharp increase in local COVID cases, we are currently operating in a surge capacity,” said Health Officer Dr. George Conway. “We ask that residents wear a mask around people they don’t live with; continue to stay home and get tested if they feel sick, and self-isolate and notify close contacts if they test positive for COVID-19. Getting vaccinated and receiving a booster shot is the best way to protect yourself from serious illness, hospitalization or death.”

If you’ve tested positive for COVID-19

Public Health officials ask those who have tested positive for COVID-19 and are awaiting a call from Public Health to:

  • Contact your medical provider if you have medical needs, including the availability of outpatient therapy options if appropriate.
  • Visit to learn more about current quarantine and isolation guidance.
  • Call the COVID-19 hotline at (541) 699-5109 if you need information about quarantine or isolation timelines or if you need support to help you quarantine or isolate. The hotline is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

If you have symptoms or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19

Public Health officials encourage individuals who are symptomatic, or were exposed to someone with COVID-19, to get tested. For the most accurate results, it is recommended to test five days after an exposure to someone with COVID-19. For information on where to get tested in Deschutes County, visit There is currently an increased demand for testing services. Residents who are seeking testing may experience delays in scheduling appointments.

If you are waiting for COVID-19 test results

Those who have had a COVID-19 test and are still awaiting their test results should stay home and away from others, officials said.

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  1. I refute these opinions in this article that say you need to get tested for the common cold. Omicron is more like a common cold variant of coronavirus than the Delta variant. No one ever got tested for the common cold before. It’s been reported (only report is from Africa so far) that says a LARGE percentage of the covid omicron hospitalizations are people with covid and not in the hospital because of covid. So they aren’t even in the hospital for treatment of omicron.

  2. I fully support masking and vaccination requirements, but contact tracing and mass testing are this point are just wastes of time, money, and effort. The horse is way past being out of the barn.

    We should be putting all our effort into better vaccines and curative therapies. The time for pandemic prevention measures like mass testing and contact tracing is way past us.

  3. Just got over Covid. It’s the flu on steroids. I don’t wear a mask, have not had my Covid flu shot and I’m fine. If you lay in bed and do nothing you could be worse. I got up every day continued my life worked hard and look I’m alive… this is all I joke!

    1. I think Conway is failing to update his recommendations based on new evidence. There has been a decoupling of infections from hospitalizations and death. Also he should have been recommending N95s for a long time but is still saying masks, which includes useless cloth masks. He’s a doc? He’s wasting his education.

  4. The world has simply gone mad!
    The article states due to the surge they can’t keep up with contact tracing? They’ve never kept up with it. I know more than a dozen people that I work with who have had it. Not one single person was ever part of a single contact tracing. It’s embarrassing to hear or read about people who are supposed to be experts “saving” us all, saying such ridiculous and demonstrably non factual statements. If not one out a dozen was traced, then the “tracing” their doing is yet another example of the government’s complete inability to do almost anything competently. The same government that so many people are so quick to let run every detail of their lives. I removed the government from my Covid decision making long ago. I’m triple vaxed, had Covid after vax and mandate free. Mandate Kate may control you, but she doesn’t control me or my family.

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