Erie County Health Department investigating two COVID-19 breakouts at veterans home, plant nursery

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Posted at 11:20 AM, May 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-29 11:20:46-04

ERIE COUNTY, Ohio — The Erie County Health Department has confirmed that 60 people at the Ohio Veterans Home in Sandusky have tested positive for COVID-19 and 10 have died. A second outbreak at a plant nursery has also been reported.

According to the health department, 13 of those infected at the veterans home are employees and 47 are residents at the facility. The 10 individuals who died were residents.

The health department said it is working with the Ohio Veterans Home and the facility has “implemented all necessary infection control measures, including widespread testing and contact tracing.”

Health officials said they are also investigating an outbreak of the novel coronavirus at a plant nursery in Huron that employees more than 375 people. Four employees there have tested positive and five more are waiting on test results.

The health department didn’t provide the name of the nursery but said the infected employees have had no contact with the general public. Health officials said the nursery has “taken all necessary actions to mitigate the spread of the virus.”

"In early March of this year, the nursery established a program addressing COVID-19 and the potential impact to their employees. This program includes mandatory face coverings, distancing protocol, additional disinfecting of all areas in the business and daily required temperature checks," The health department said. "In the past two weeks, with the continued program in place, the nursery recognized a few employees displaying signs of COVID-19. These employees were in contact with physicians then sent for testing."

Free testing is being offered by the health department for anyone who lives or works in Erie County. It includes nasal swabs to determine if someone is currently infected as well as antibody testing to check to see if someone was previously infected. More information about the free testing and how to register can be found here.

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