40 positive cases of COVID-19 reported at Walton County nursing facility

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DEFUNIAK SPRINGS, Fla. (WMBB) — 40 positive cases of COVID-19 and two deaths were reported at Chautauqua Rehab & Nursing Center in Defuniak Springs.

The individuals who tested positive include 20 residents and 20 staff members.

The test results come after the company decided to take a proactive and aggressive approach against the Coronavirus by performing facility-wide testing.

As more results trickle in, the company expects the number of cases to increase.

The company said that an “outbreak” is not to blame for the numbers. Instead, they are a direct result of an intentional strategy to test everyone.

Chief Operating Officer for Signature HealthCARE, Chris Cox, said that their company has been working around the clock striving to get ready for Covid-19.

“This is why we hired the experts we have on our team, including a new Chief Infectious Disease Physician,” Cox said.

The facility has a Covid-19 plan that focuses on two main things: communication and following CDC guidelines.

The company is screening all stakeholders and residents daily for symptoms of the virus, utilizing the proper personal protective equipment, restricting facility visitation, and using alternative methods of communication for families including telehealth, social media, and the mailing of cards and letters.

The facility has not released any names at this time.

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