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The aim was to identify COVID-19

 In March of 2020, Dr. Ryan Close, director of preventative medicine at IHS’ Whiteriver branch, believed that a uniform tracing method would be necessary to protect the White Mountain Tribe’s most vulnerable inhabitants. As a certified pediatrician and expert in epidemiology Close had spent years orchestrating home visits for the Dominican Republic village of Consuelo, and had performed the community-based HIV activities in Swaziland in 2006. When White Mountain recorded its first positive coronavirus diagnosis on April 1st–making it one of the very few locations in Arizona to log one–Close and his staff medmenshealth med mens health Website med mens health com of 30 were already laying out the details of their planned High-Risk Outreach program, which was formalized by White Mountain leaders and doctors in the U.S. Public Health Commissioned Corps. The aim was to identify COVID-19 in elders before they realized they had it. “We curated and honed an approach that is based on effectiveness,” Close said. “One which works with people when they’re diagnosed with COVID-19. The tracers are able to work around this.

 Close and his team were able to be proud by the end of the summer. He and Dr. Myles Stone, director of the High-Risk Outreach Program published on July 16, in the New England Journal of Medicine that their new method of “knocking on doors” had “successfully flattened the curve.” In a four-month period, 1,600 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed. White Mountain Apache died at less than half (1.1%) of other Arizonans. And , despite the 90-degree temperature mountain lions, wild dogs, backcountry roads and the possibility of spreading, Close made it clear that home visits every week are crucial. “Only when we are in the field are we able to spot these patients earlier, and initiate support and possibly save lives,” he wrote.

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