Lee County nursing home exceeds 100 cases of COVID-19, and 7 deaths

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Published: Oct. 23, 2020 at 2:07 PM EDT
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LEE COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - In Lee County, a nursing home has more than 100 cases of COVID-19 and seven deaths, Kentucky River District Health Department Public Health Director Scott Lockard confirms to WYMT.

“A person can be asymptomatic, they can contract the virus and not show any symptoms like a fever which allows them to pass health screenings at work.” said Lockard, “this is by far the biggest outbreak in the Kentucky River District and we have seen some bigger outbreaks in nursing homes across the state but this is the event that we have feared that would happen the most and unfortunately has come to fruition.”

In total there are 128 cases at the nursing home involving 75 residents and 53 staff members.

“My most recent conversation with the administrator over there was they were seeing a lot of improvement in several of the patients that first became sick," said Lockard.

Lockard said this is the biggest nursing home outbreak in the Kentucky River District.

“This has been a tragic event for our community, for the nursing facility, for our health department," added Lockard. "Our hearts all just break for what’s going on over there.”

Lockard said an employee may have been asymptomatic and passed health screenings at work, which then could have brought the virus into the facility. The health department is working to find out what caused the virus to get in.

“We can’t say for sure how it got into the facility, but that is most likely the route of transmission that we’re looking at, at this time," said Lockard.

Lee County Judge-Executive Chuck Caudill has a family member in the nursing home who tested positive.

“She is still healthy, it’s a simple thing of she’s in my prayers, as she always is," said Caudill.

Caudill said he is seeing the community work hard to help protect each other.

“Respect other people for being cautious, and I’ve seen the socially distancing has become habitual,” added Caudill.

Caudill even offered a message to the resident and families who are impacted by the outbreak.

“We’re your friends and neighbors, as we always have been, and we’re here for you," said Caudill.

We reached out to Signature HealthCARE who operates the facility. The PR and Communications Manager referred WYMT to a statement the company previously released. You can read that by clicking here.

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