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April 09
Wake County Identifies First COVID-19 Outbreak At Long-Term Care Facility

Two nurses, two patients have tested positive for virus

Wake County today identified the county’s first outbreak of COVID-19 at a long-term care facility. To date, four people – two nurses and two patients – at Wellington Rehabilitation and Healthcare in Knightdale have tested positive for the coronavirus.

“We’re concerned about the potential for COVID-19 to spread rapidly among residents at the facility, because many of the residents are older and have additional health conditions that put them at risk of serious illness if they contract the virus,” said Wake County Medical Director Dr. Kim McDonald.

The two patients who tested positive for COVID-19 are currently receiving treatment at WakeMed Health and Hospitals.

To get a better sense of the true impact of the virus on the 80-bed facility, Wake County Public Health team is testing patients and staff members who came in close contact with the people who have the virus. It will likely take 7–10 days to get the test results back.

Until then, public health is advising Wellington Rehabilitation and Healthcare that staff wear personal protective equipment at all times, practice appropriate social distancing and frequently clean surfaces with disinfectant.

Wake County Emergency Operations Center organized a conference call this evening with the operators of the facility and reviewed these requirements:

  • Abide by Wake County’s proclamation, which prevents nursing homes and long-term care facilities from accepting visitors;
  • Prevent staff from working second jobs at other locations to avoid spread of the virus;
  • Isolate symptomatic residents from healthy residents; and
  • Follow new safety procedures established by EMS and local fire departments when calling for emergency assistance.

Wake County has spoken with Wellington Rehabilitation and Healthcare several times since the Emergency Operations Center activated in early March. Our call center gave the facility guidance on how to manage sick and healthy employees, and how to setup testing for its residents.

Staying Updated
Wake County has made it easy for you to stay updated on the latest information about COVID-19. You can visit our COVID-19 webpage, which has a set of frequently asked questions to educate residents in English and in Spanish, a list of COVID-19-related closures and service changes, as well as an email address and phone number that people can use to ask personal health-related questions about COVID-19.

The county is also sharing important information on its FacebookTwitter and Instagram accounts.


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