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Health Department

Posted on: May 12, 2020

Wilkes Health Response to COVID-19 at Residential Facility

As of 10:00am Tuesday May 12, 2020 Wilkes County’s confirmed COVID-19 total is 242 cases. The latest outbreak is at Rose Glen Village, a residential living facility in Wilkesboro. In a residential living setting, a COVID-19 outbreak is defined as two or more laboratory-confirmed cases. A residential care facility can include adult care homes, family care homes, multi-unit assisted housing, group homes, Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities. Across the state there have been 389 positive cases and 44 deaths.  An outbreak is considered over if there is no evidence of continued transmission within the facility. Rose Glen Village has reported 2 positive cases.

Rose Glen Village has taken measures to protect employees and decrease the chance of person to person transmission throughout the facility. These measures include, but are not limited to, temperature and symptom checks. At a minimum, they are taking resident daily temperatures, performed respiratory assessments and monitoring other medical information beyond what is normally required. The facility is reinforcing the importance of staying home when sick or to meet childcare needs, as well as restricted visitor access the facility. They are also providing personal protective equipment and employing social distancing policies where possible.

“Rose Glen Village administration has already been working to closely follow U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines in mitigation steps taken at the residential care facility” said Rachel Willard, Health Director Wilkes Health. Willard added that “Rose Glen has been very receptive to input from Wilkes Health and the Wilkes Health Environmental Health Team. Our environmental health team has been in constant communication with administration and they have been given all the necessary guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and NC DHHS. Wilkes Health speaks daily with administration regarding employee and resident health and any new recommendations that are developed.” Wilkes Health has worked with the facility to identify a process for how to manage confirmed cases and close contacts to cases.


The 2 persons with COVID-19 are now in self-isolation. The facility has 86 tenants.


Wilkes Health plans on collecting nasal swab samples for COVID-19 from the majority of tenants and 50 staff members at Rose Glen Village on Friday May 15, 2020.


According to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, people with COVID-19 can end self-isolation and return to their normal activities when they’ve been without fever (and without medicine for fever) for three days (72 hours), their respiratory symptoms have improved and it’s been at least ten days since they first had symptoms.


“The safety of tenants and staff is a top priority. The vulnerable and elderly are especially susceptible to this virus and as healthcare providers, we agree that stopping its spread is a critical issue that requires our complete attention and most competent efforts,” said Willard.


If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, we would recommend you be tested. This means if you are sick with a fever, cough or other mild symptoms, call your healthcare provider or Wilkes Health. Please do not just show up to a doctor’s office without calling first. This will help your provider prepare should you need to be tested and lessen the potential exposure to others.

If you have a medical emergency, please call 911 immediately.


Wilkes Health also wants to remind the public that community transmission is happening in Wilkes County. Every person is a potential carrier, even if no symptoms are present, so it’s urgent that every person -sick or healthy- stay home to the fullest extent possible and help break the chain of transmission. Wilkes Health wants to continue to encourage people to protect themselves to help lessen the spread of COVID-19 in our community. There are many ways we can all protect ourselves and our communities.


If you go out you should practice the three W’s: Wear, Wait, and Wash.

Wear a face covering,      
Wait 6 feet apart from other people.
Wash your hands often

How to Protect Yourself

  • Practice social distancing which means avoiding gatherings of more than 10 people, keeping 6 feet or more between you and others and remaining at home to the greatest extent possible
  • Frequent hand washing
  • Cover your cough or sneeze
  • Keep distance from others who are sick
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces in common areas like doorknobs, remotes, lightswitches, tables and handles
  • Wear cloth mask or face covering when out in public where you may be around people like grocery stores or pharmacies.


COVID-19 Signs & Symptoms

  • Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure. According to the CDC, people with COVID-19 have had a wide range of reported symptoms.
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell

People at high risk include anyone who:

  • Is 65 years of age or older
  • Lives in a nursing home or long-term care facility
  • Have a high-risk condition that includes:
  • Chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • Heart disease with complications
  • Compromised immune system
  • Severe obesity – body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher
  • Other underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, such as diabetes, renal failure or liver disease
  • Pregnant Women
  • People who are at high risk should stay home to the greatest extent possible to decrease the chance of infection.

Additional Resources:
Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.

North Carolina resources can be found on the Division of Public Health website at www.ncdhhs.gov/coronavirus. To view the case count for North Carolina, including a county map, please visit the NC DHHS website here.

A COVID-19 toll free helpline has been set up to answer general, non-emergent questions at 1-866-462-3821. To submit questions online, go to www.ncpoisoncontrol.org and select “chat.”

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