File Photo (Libertyville High School) | Photo: District 128.

The number of coronavirus cases has risen to 22 in Lake County, which includes a Libertyville High School staff member who tested positive for the virus Tuesday evening.

The Lake County Health Department said that as of 3 p.m. Wednesday, 22 Lake County residents have tested positive for COVID-19 since March 11. Public health officials are urging all residents to take precautions to stay healthy and stop the spread of the virus.

Community High School District 128 Superintendent Dr. Prentiss Lea said Tuesday evening that a staff member at Libertyville High School tested positive for coronavirus.

“District 128 continues to take the COVID-19 situation very seriously. We are fortunate to partner with the experts at the Lake County Health Department during this uncertain time, and out of an abundance of caution will continue to follow their lead and directives,” Lea said.

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“Social distancing is crucial to help reduce the spread of COVID-19,” said Lisa Kritz, Director of Prevention for the Lake County Health Department.

“While early research shows that 80 percent of those who contract COVID-19 will experience only mild symptoms, we need to be extremely cautious to protect our population with preexisting medical concerns and the elderly,” Kritz said.

Kritz also said that the community must work together to ease the burden on medical facilities in order to ensure the most vulnerable are able to get care they need.

Lake County health officials said they are expecting a significant increase in the number of coronavirus cases in Lake County. The Public Health Emergency Operations Center (PHEOC) has been anticipating and planning for this increase.

“Testing is being prioritized for people with symptoms who have high risk of complications. This includes older adults living in congregate settings and those with chronic health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes, and those with weakened immune systems,” the Lake County Health Department said in a statement.

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People who do not show any symptoms do not need to get tested, the health department added.

If you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, stay home. Health officials urge sick individuals to distance themselves from others and call their healthcare provider if the symptoms worsen.

“Do not walk into a healthcare facility, urgent care clinic, or hospital before calling. Discuss your symptoms with your doctor. If your doctor believes that you need to be tested for COVID-19, your doctor should call the Lake County Health Department Communicable Disease program to determine if you should be tested,” health officials said.