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Coronavirus

DeKalb County Rehab & Nursing Center confirms first case of COVID-19 in employee

The DeKalb County Rehab and Nursing Center Wednesday, June 19.
The DeKalb County Rehab and Nursing Center Wednesday, June 19.

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DeKALB - The first case of coronavirus in a longterm care facility in DeKalb County has been confirmed, as the DeKalb County Rehab and Nursing Center announced its first case Friday afternoon.

According to a news release from the facility, the DeKalb County Health Department confirmed an employee had contracted the virus Thursday.

"The employee has worked in our facility in the recent past and is currently [in] self-isolation at home," the release states. "DCRNC is working closely with DeKalb County Health Department to prevent further exposure and transmission. Following guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), additional actions are being taken to monitor and protect the health and safety of residents and the facilities’ healthcare staff."

Steve Duchene, administrator for the center, did not immediately respond to requests for comment, and when reached by phone, a staff worker at the nursing center deferred comment to Duchene.

"We have identified all residents that may have been exposed. Those residents and their family/guardian/representative/conservator were notified, as well as the residents’ physician," the release continues. "These affected residents have been placed on transmission-based precautions."

Lisa Gonzalez, DeKalb County Public Health administrator, said the facility has been very proactive in doing its best to contain the virus.

"The nursing home has done an amazing job since day one in following the guidance so when this situation happened they were proactive in the approach," Gonzalez said. "They looked right away at the contact the case had with residents, then putting those residents in quarantine and monitoring them closely."

Gonzalez said the health department has been passing along guidance to the center since the start, and the advice for the nursing homes that they are passing along from the state and the Centers for Disease Control doesn't change.

In the release, the center staff said they remain focused on preventing the virus from entering the facility, and ongoing efforts remain, including continuing the no-visitor policy. Testing for all residents and staff will be scheduled as soon as testing kits can be secured, the release states.

"The residents are being monitored closely," the release continues. "Our hard-working and dedicated staff are doing everything possible to ensure their health and safety. In turn, the administrative and management team are also doing everything possible to support the care of the residents but also to support our employees.

We ask that you please keep us in your thoughts and prayers, knowing we have ample equipment, supplies and willingness with our workforce to see this through."

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