Public Health

County subpoenas partygoers who didn't cooperate in COVID-19 contact tracing

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Officials in Rockland County, New York, issued subpoenas last week when people who attended a party refused to cooperate with COVID-19 contact tracers.

All eight people who received the subpoenas decided to cooperate, report the New York Times, CNN and the Washington Post. If they had resisted, they would have faced fines of up to $2,000 per day.

Up to 100 people attended the party hosted by a person showing signs of being sick. The host tested positive for COVID-19, along with eight others who attended the party.

At the time, the state limited gatherings to 10 people. Officials were especially concerned because some of the guests at the party may have attended two other large parties.

Ed Day, the Rockland County executive, explained the decision at a news conference.

“I will not allow the health of our county to be compromised because of ignorance, stupidity or obstinance, or anything else,” he said.

Contact tracing is used to inform and test people who may have been exposed to the coronavirus and then to quarantine them if they test positive for COVID-19.

See also: “Contact-tracing apps could help contain COVID-19 but raise thorny legal and privacy issues”

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