READING, Pa - Co-County Wellness Services in Reading is approaching 800 contacts in its database since the COVID-19 contact tracing program in Berks County began in June, the agency's deputy director, Barbara Waller, revealed Tuesday.

"Right now, we are seeing a larger number of contacts associated with one case," Waller said. "Back in the very beginning, think back in March, and everyone was saying every case had about 10 contacts."

The group said one recent positive case had 13 contacts attached, and another had seven.

"Contact" is considered spending more than 15 minutes in close proximity to another person.

People are cooperating, but some simply don't know the details of those they've come in contact with.

"We are seeing more people refusing, and they're actually refusing right at the Department of Health nurses, where they're actually putting right in they would not give no last names, just a first name," Waller explained.

Ten interns from Kutztown University are expected at the Co-County Wellness building later this week for their final training to help in the county's contact tracing efforts. The center said it hopes that refusals of information won't increase in the weeks and months ahead.

"This is just to try to do our very best to stop this COVID-19, so, and you've got to do it," Waller urged. "We need to know."

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