Disease Research & Intervention Specialist - Contact Tracing

King County   Seattle, WA   Full-time     Education
Apply Now
Posted on November 11, 2020

Contact Tracer 
We are looking to hire up to 40 Contact Tracers! Contact Tracers conduct in-depth interviews with individuals (“cases”) who tested positive for COVID-19. They contact individuals identified by cases (“contacts”) who were potentially exposed while the case was in the contagious period of their illness.  Contact Tracers notify contacts about their exposure status. They support COVID-19 positive cases and their contacts with access to testing, communicate isolation and quarantine (I&Q) guidelines, and help support people adhere to these I&Q guidelines by providing information and referrals to community resources. We estimate that these roles will last through June 2021, however the position length is contingent upon funding.

Commitment to Equity and Social Justice: As the only jurisdiction in the world named after Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., one of the most influential civil rights leaders in our nation's history, King County is a vibrant international community with residents that represent countries from around the world. It is a region with increasing diversity that cherishes the traditions of many cultures.
We have a deep commitment to equity and social justice and advancing practices, strategies and policies that promote fairness, justice and opportunity for all – in our workplaces and our communities. With this commitment, King County has adopted a pro-equity agenda to advance regional change and ensure that residents from vulnerable communities are incorporated into our emergency planning and public outreach efforts.

This will be posted continuously with a review conducted on the pool every two weeks. First review will take place on applications received through November 24th, 11:59 pm.

The selected candidate will integrate King County's Equity and Social Justice principles into the daily functions of this position.

Work Schedule: The normal work schedule for these roles are between 1.0 FTE, 40 hours a week, weekdays & at least 3 weekend shifts per month, variable shift hours between 8:30 AM -8:30 PM. These positions are FLSA non-exempt and are overtime eligible.

Who May Apply: This position is open to all qualified candidates.

Location of Employees:  Applicants must be able to come to our downtown Seattle (Chinook building, 401 5th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104) to participate in skills assessments prior to interviewing.  If hired, new employees must be able to come to Seattle downtown (Chinook Building) to sign necessary paperwork, receive equipment (laptop, headset, monitor, docking station, etc.), and receive initial training. Once initial training is passed, work will be done remotely.

Application Process

First application review will take place September 2nd. The following items are required to be considered for this vacancy:
  • NEOGOV/Government Jobs on-line or paper application
  • Complete answers to Supplemental Questions

Your application may be rejected as incomplete if you do not include the standard information in the application. Providing information only in a resume will not be considered a complete application.

  • Data entry and computer literacy skills assessments will be required of all applicants moved along in the process and prior to interview.
  • Employment will be contingent upon successful completion of a required training and passage of a graded post-training observation (trainees must demonstrate required skills to continue employment)

Contact: For information regarding the application process, please contact Erika Yanak, Human Resource Analyst, at  Erika.Yanak@kingcounty.gov.

Job Duties

  • Call COVID-19 positive cases and conduct in-depth interviews, follow scripted language and use suggested prompts, enter responses into a case management database.
  • Call and text contacts (those identified as potentially exposed to Covid-19) using call scripts and suggested prompts; share information about exposure and guidelines for quarantine; facilitate linkages to testing and other community resources needed to support their quarantine.
  • Follow up on requests for support or additional information; ensure cases and contacts needs’ have been met or they have been referred on to appropriate agency.
  • Refer to Community Health Workers for additional support with enrolling in needed services
  • Facilitate access to interpretation services, as needed.
  • Conduct daily work using multiple data collection and communication platforms, such as REDCap, Mosio, Skype, Zoom and Office 365 products.
  • Document challenges and bring issues to supervisors and team leads; implement identified solutions
  • Strictly adhere to rules regarding client confidentiality and handling of PHI (like notes taken, and other communication)
  • Participate actively in daily AM and PM staff phone calls

Experience, Qualifications, Knowledge, Skills

Successful candidates will demonstrate all of the following at minimum: 

  • Ability to establish rapport on the phone with diverse groups of people in a very brief amount of time
  • Ability to work with communities of people with varied lived experiences in a non-judgmental manner
  • Knowledge of motivational interviewing skills; ability to improvise and encourage responsiveness when encountered with a person’s unwillingness to engage; demonstrated interviewing and elicitation skills
  • Ability to probe and improvise responses to questions in a clear, professional, and compassionate manner
  • Ability to comprehend complex information and adapt to changing guidance. Demonstrated ability to follow procedures/protocols and apply them to unpredictable situations
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Ability to function with minimal direct supervision
  • Demonstrated ability to protect Protected Health Information and other confidential information
  • Demonstrated ability to convey public health guidance in a clear and concise manner
  • Highly proficient in navigating Microsoft computers; using communication tools (Skype, Zoom), and case management or online data collection tools; familiarity with Office products like Word, Excel, Teams, and PowerPoint
  • Fluency in English is required; bilingual Spanish-English language skills are preferred; fluency in other languages is desired

The most competitive applicants will also have the following desired experiences and qualifications: 
  • Experience using REDCap
  • Experience navigating and using electronic health records and/or other client level data repositories
  • Demonstrated ability to provide medical information in a clear and concise manner
  • Knowledge and demonstrated application of behavior change theory and risk reduction strategies
  • Professional or personal experience in working with members of King County’s Black, Indigenous, People of Color communities (e.g. African-American, Latinx, Pacific Islander, Duwamish, Vietnamese, Somali, Mixtecos, etc.), immigrant and/or refugee communities, LGBTQ, people living with disabilities and/or people experiencing homelessness

Supplemental Information

Forbes recently named King County as one of Washington State's best employers. 

Together, with leadership and our employees, we're changing the way government delivers service and winning national recognition as a model of excellence. Are you ready to make a difference? Come join the team dedicated to serving one of the nation's best places to live, work and play. 

Guided by our "True North", we are making King County a welcoming community where every person can thrive. We value diversity, inclusion and belonging in our workplace and workforce. To reach this goal we are committed to workforce equity. Equitable recruiting, support, and retention is how we will obtain the highest quality workforce in our region; a workforce that shares and will help advance our guiding principles--we are one team; we solve problems; we focus on the customer; we drive for results; we are racially just; we respect all people; we lead the way; and we are responsible stewards. We encourage people of all backgrounds and identities to apply, including Native American and people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ+, people living with disabilities, and veterans.

King County is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Employer
No person is unlawfully excluded from employment opportunities based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation and pregnancy), age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or other protected class. Our EEO policy applies to all employment actions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, selection for training, promotion, transfer, demotion, layoff, termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation.

To Apply
If you are interested in pursuing this position, please follow the application instructions carefully. If you need this announcement in an alternate language or format, would like to request accommodation or assistance in the application or assessment process or if you have questions please contact your recruiter listed on this job announcement.

Necessary Information:

  • You must completely fill out the application with your relevant education and work experience.
  • For more information on our selection process, please refer to www.kingcounty.gov/depts/health/jobs/hiring. For tips on interviewing, please visit https://www.kingcounty.gov/~/media/audience/employees/learning-and-development/Interview_Tips.ashx?la=en.
  • Employees are required to protect the privacy and security of protected health information as defined in State and Federal Law.
  • Public Health relies on office automation (Microsoft Office) and web-based enabled tools, therefore candidates must be proficient and comfortable with computer use to perform functions associated with on-going work.
  • Employees are required to adhere to OSHA/WISHA guidelines including but not limited to completing their mandatory trainings on time and obtaining required immunizations.
  • The selected candidate will be required to submit a background check. Records are not automatically disqualifying.
  • Regular and reliable attendance, effective communication skills, and development of effective working relationships are requirements of all Public Health positions.
  • Staff may be required to play an active role in the event of a public health emergency, which may include changes in responsibilities and working hours.
  • If you need a disability accommodation in the application or testing process, please call the contact number listed on the job announcement.
Union Membership: This position is represented by Local 21 labor union.

King County offers a highly-competitive compensation and benefits package designed to meet the diverse needs of our employees and support our employees' health and well-being.  Eligible positions receive the following benefits and have access to the following programs:

  • Medical, dental, and vision coverage: King County pays 100% of the premiums for eligible employees and family members
  • Life and disability insurance: employees are provided basic coverage and given the opportunity to purchase additional insurance for both the employee and eligible dependents
  • Retirement: King County employees are eligible to participate in a pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems and a 457(b) deferred-compensation plan
  • Transportation program and ORCA transit pass
  • 10 paid holidays each year (plus 2 personal holidays)
  • Generous vacation and paid sick leave
  • Paid parental leave, family and medical leaves, and volunteer leave
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Wellness programs
  • Onsite gyms and activity centers
  • Employee giving program
  • Employee assistance programs
  • Flexible schedules and telecommuting options, depending on position
  • Training and career development programs
For additional information about employee benefits please visit our Benefits, Payroll, and Retirement Page.

This is a general description of the benefits offered to eligible King County employees, and every effort has been made to ensure its accuracy.  If any information on this document conflicts with the provisions of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA), the CBA prevails.  Also, in the event of any incorrect information in this document, applicable laws, policies, rules, CBAs, or official plan documents will prevail.
NOTE:  Benefits for Term Limited Temporary (TLT) or Short Term Temporary (STT) positions, including leave eligibility and/or participation in the pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems, will vary based upon the terms and details of the position. Short Term Temporary positions are not eligible for an ORCA transit pass.
For inquiries about the specifics of this position, please contact the recruiter identified on this job posting.

Do you have demonstrated experience working with people from a variety of racial, ethnic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds?
  • Yes
  • No
If you answered yes to question #1, describe your experience. Be specific and include in your response the employer/organization and position(s) where you gained this experience. If you do not have this experience then type N/A.
Do you have demonstrated experience collecting data and entering information into a database?
  • Yes
  • No
If you answered yes to question #3, please describe your experience collecting data and entering information into a database. Include the employer or organization, the position you held, and the length of time you worked or volunteered in a confidential setting. Be specific. If you answered no, put N/A.
Please describe your experiences following structured procedures or protocols, probing for responses, and/or improvising responses in unpredictable situations.
Please indicate which of the following you are proficient in using.
  • Communication tools (Skype, Zoom)
  • Case management databases or online data collection tools
  • MS Word
  • MS Teams
  • MS PowerPoint
  • MS Excel
Are you bilingual in English and another language?
  • Yes
  • No
Are you bilingual in English and another language?
  • Yes
  • No
If you answered yes, please list the language(s) below. If no, please enter n/a.
Are you applying to this position as a Priority Placement Program Participant And Is this position the same or lower percentage of full-time when compared to the position held at the point of the notification of layoff AND Do you possess the skills and abilities to qualify for this position?
  • Yes, I was given a layoff notice from my role at King County AND I am within two years of the effective date of my layoff. AND The position I was laid off from was the same or a higher percentage of FT status when compared to this one.
  • No.
If you answered yes to the question above and you are applying for this position as a Priority Placement Participant, to be considered, you must provide the following three pieces of information in the space provided: 1. The title you held when you received your layoff notice 2. The department you worked in 3. The effective date of your layoff

Required Question