Okeechobee Health Care Facility staff member retested; second COVID-19 test came back negative

OKEECHOBEE – The Okeechobee Health Care Facility staff member who was reported as a positive case of COVID-19 on Tuesday may not have had the virus after all, according to information shared Wednesday evening by Jennifer Williamson on behalf of OHCF.

“I’m told the individual was re-tested and the result came back negative,” Ms. Williamson shared in an email. “The local health department is doing another test on the employee tomorrow, and we won’t have the results for a few days. I’m advised the staff member is home, feeling great, in good spirits and ready to get back to work.

“Of course, the facility is awaiting a second negative test result first, as it has gone to great lengths to quarantine the entire unit where the employee worked as safety of all our residents and staff is our top priority.

“In an effort to be proactive, we are reporting any residents that present with a temperature of 100 degrees or more to the local health department. The health department then comes over and tests the resident. We had one resident tested today, and we are awaiting those results. We were testing residents and staff that presented with potential COVID-19 symptoms before the matter below occurred, and those tests were all negative. In addition, we are quarantining all admissions for 14 days to ensure they are not positive. This measure is for their own safety, as well as the safety of our other residents and staff.”

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