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Workforce Development Institute
The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the need for a massive workforce of contact tracers to help end the global pandemic. Rapidly accelerating the recruitment, selection, and training of contact tracers proved to be difficult due in part to the lack of a valid, structured, and systematic approach to hiring and training contact tracers. This demonstration presents the results of the first step in developing a systematic selection and training program: a worker-oriented job analysis of the contact tracer job. Using archival records and structured interviews with 15 subject matter experts, we identified 26 unique characteristics related to successful performance as a contact tracer. We also identify which are needed as part of selection versus those that can be trained, and develop predictive hypotheses for each. Results jump-start the process of developing a systematic approach to selecting and training contact tracers to help end the COVID-19 pandemic and navigate future public health emergencies.
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Dalal, Dev; Randall, Jason G. PhD; Danna, Gabrielle; and Ash, Joshua. 2021. "Key Psychological Characteristics Related to Success as a Contact Tracer" Understanding and eliminating minority health disparities in a 21st-century pandemic: A White Paper Collection. University at Albany, SUNY: Scholars Archive.