Contact Tracers


Employment Prospects


Contact tracers are employed by state, county, and local health departments, federal agencies such as the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention; nonprofit health care organizations such as the Boston-based Partners In Health; and colleges and universities.

Starting Out

Some people land full-time contact tracing jobs after participating in internships during college. Others contact state and local health department directly (or visit their Web sites) to learn about job openings. You can also go to the CDC Foundation's Web site,, and USA Jobs (, the official Web site of the federal government, to learn about openings.  

Advancement Prospects

Some people work as contact tracers during or right after college in order to gain experience in public health before moving on to careers in nursing, epidemiology, medicine, or other fields. Other contact tracers choose to stay in the field. In this instance, a contact tracer with considerable experience and knowledge can become a case investigator, who manages a staff of contact tracers, tracks the teams’ progress toward target goals, and serves as the unit’s point of contact with higher-level management. Other tracers complete additional education to become epidemiologists, who study the cause, spread, and control of diseases and injuries that affect groups of people or communities. 

Tips for Entry

Read the American Journal of Infection Control (, Prevention Strategist (, and The Journal of Infectious Diseases ( to learn more about infection control and epidemiology.

Visit the following Web sites for job listings:


Try to obtain as much experience in jobs that require interaction with customers to build your communication and interpersonal skills.




Be willing to relocate. It may open more opportunities.