Member Of Gov. Pritzker's Staff Tests Positive For COVID-19

WBBM Newsradio Staff
April 07, 2020 - 2:38 pm
JB Pritzker Mask COVID 19 Update

Ted Schurter/The State Journal-Register via USA TODAY NETWORK

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- A member of Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker's staff has tested positive for COVID-19, the governor announced Tuesday.

The unidentified staff member is isolating at home after becoming unwell March 26 at the governor's office, Pritzker said. Everyone else was sent home, and the governor's office at the Thompson Center was deep-cleaned for several hours, Pritkzer said.

He said only a minimal number of administration employees are now going to the governor's office. Those who come to work have their temperatures checked, he said.

"Let this just affirm what we already know: Nobody is immune," Pritzker said at his daily briefing about the state's efforts to contain coronavirus.

The governor said he did not come in regular contact with the staff member and was not himself tested after the diagnosis.

Also Tuesday, Illinois reported 73 new deaths related to COVID-19, the biggest daily spike in the state's number of fatalities. The state's total number of cases of coronavirus rose by 1,287 to 13,549, including 380 deaths, said Illinois Department of Public Health Director Ngozi Ezike.

Pritzker said the state of California shipped 100 ventilators to Illinois to help the Midwestern state prepare for a coming spike of critically ill patients who may need the devices. He said Illinois will "pay it forward" when it is in a position to aid other states that are grappling with the disease.

Meantime, Indiana officials reported 34 more residents have died from COVID-19, boosting the state's death toll to 173 as its confirmed coronavirus cases surged past 5,000.

The 34 new deaths reported Tuesday were the largest number the Indiana State Department of Health has reported to date in its daily pandemic updates, following 24 deaths the state agency reported last Friday, the Associated Press reported.