Six National Guard medics staffed at Grafton care facility with positive COVID-19 cases

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GRAFTON, Wis. (CBS 58) - Six medics with the Wisconsin National Guard are now working inside a senior living facility in Grafton.

One person at the Village Pointe Commons died from the Coronavirus (COVID-19), and four other people tested positive for the virus.

The National Guard medics around 4:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon.

They will help cover staffing shortages for the next 72-hours.

During this time the facility is supposed to work on a long-term staffing solution.

Guard medics will be using their own personal protective equipment that they would have for a normal military mission.

This includes items as masks, gloves, protective gowns.

On Saturday night, CBS 58 witnessed several people leave the facility with medical masks over their face.

There were also people in the windows with masks and protective gowns over their clothing.

A large sign on the main door reads that visitors are not allowed.

“The other half of our core mission is to serve our state during times of emergency," National Guard Capt. Joe Trovato said. “We have many different skill sets as an organization. All of that knowledge, all of that experience can be leveraged to help our communities with,  really,  whatever kind of request they may need.”

On Saturday, the Washington Ozaukee Public Health Department issued two orders to protect long-term care residents. 

According to the media release:

"The first order immediately requires ALL long-term care facilities to lock down immediately which includes nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and memory care facilities. The lock down order does not prevent staff from coming or going for their shift, rather, provides guidance to nursing homes on visitor restrictions, healthcare personnel infection prevention strategies, resident monitoring and restrictions, general infection control, managing personal protection equipment (PPE) and supply shortages, reporting to the health department, and requiring documentation of residents who leave the facility for any reason."

"The second order immediately requires all first responders and emergency medical services to wear PPE when responding to all health emergency calls including those requesting assistance at long-term care facilities, and nursing homes. Personal protective equipment at a minimum shall include face masks, goggles, and gloves."

“As a public health department, our job is to keep the most vulnerable safe and provide guidance to ensure containment of COVID-19,” said Public Health Officer Kirsten Johnson. “We will also continue to update the public to ensure all residents work together to slow the spread of the coronavirus. When there is risk of community spread, we will let the public know. Please continue to stay home when you are sick, contact your health care provider if you are symptomatic for COVID-19, practice social distancing, and only leave your home when absolutely necessary.”



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