Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee plans for new COVID-19 contact tracers

Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

NASHVILLE - Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey said Tuesday that while her department brought on another 230 people last month to help with critical contact tracing of people exposed to the coronavirus, the department is looking to bring on an unspecified number of additional workers in coming days.

During Gov. Bill Lee's online news briefing on Tuesday, Piercey said in response to questions posed by the Times Free Press that her department has "well above 300 contact tracers and looking to bring on another cohort, probably sometime in June."

The contact tracers interview individuals who test positive for the virus and gain information about their contacts with other people in recent weeks. Then comes trying to find and speak to the people, many of whom likely don't know they had been in contact with someone who later tested positive.