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Former Lake County Jail inmate tests positive for COVID-19 shortly after release

File Photo (Lake County Jail) | Photo: Google Street View.

Ten Lake County Jail inmates are being monitored after an inmate tested positive for coronavirus shortly after being released from the jail.

The Lake County Sheriff’s Office said they were notified Thursday evening that a 28-year-old Des Plaines man, who was discharged from the Lake County Jail on April 13 following a plea agreement, had tested positive.

The 28-year-old inmate was booked into the Lake County Jail on February 27. He began complaining of flu-like symptoms on April 8 and was seen several times by the jail’s medical provider.

While he was being discharged on April 13, the man did not report any symptoms and his temperature registered normal, according to Lake County Sheriff Spokesman Sgt. Christopher Covelli.

The inmate checked into a Cook County hospital where he was tested for COVID-19 on Wednesday and the test came back positive. The inmate was discharged from the hospital shortly after receiving the test results.

There are ten other inmates who were housed in the same pod of the former inmate. None of those inmates are experiencing any symptoms of illness but they are being closely monitored by medical staff.

“A number of protocols have been enacted since February to reduce the likelihood of COVID-19 entering the jail as well as enhanced mitigation procedures should inmates feel ill. Thus far, these mitigation procedures have been overall successful,” Covelli said.

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Those measures include enhanced medical screening for inmates and employees entering the jail, increased cleaning of jail pods, minimization of inmates moving from pod to pod, utilizing personal protection equipment for all jail staff, and quarantining new inmates for 14 days before they enter general population.

There are currently three inmates in the medical unit. Two of those inmates entered the jail on Thursday. One of them has been diagnosed with an upper respiratory infection and the other had a slightly elevated temperature.

The third inmate in the medical unit is suffering from stomach pains. All three inmates are in good condition. No other jail inmates are experiencing a fever or any other symptoms of illness.

“If an inmate’s health begins to significantly decline, an inmate experiences a medical emergency, or their medical care is beyond the capabilities of the medical provider, the inmate would be immediately transported to an area hospital for treatment,” Covelli said.


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