As a public service, Shaw Media will provide open access to information related to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) emergency. Sign up for the newsletter here
SYCAMORE - Two DeKalb County residents in their 70's have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, marking the third straight day of consecutive new cases announced by the DeKalb County Health Department.
As of 2:30 p.m. Thursday, the new cases make six total for the county, and public health officials have said they expect the number to rise as more testing becomes available.
When asked if the two people in their 70's were residents of any senior care facilities in DeKalb County, Lisa Gonzalez, public health administrator, declined to answer.
"We are not disclosing that type of information at this time," she said.
The two new cases join with other cases announced since Saturday, including a person in their 30s, a Northern Illinois University student in their 20's, and two more adults, one in their 50's and one in their 40's.
The Illinois Department of Public Health announced 488 new cases Friday, bringing the total in the state to 3,026 positive cases in 40 counties. A total of 34 deaths are also reported, including eight more Friday, with 86% of deaths among patients 60 and older.
Gonzalez has said the department will remain with their current policy, not to release any further information about the cases which could identify the individual to the public.
She said all those who may have come into close contact with the patient are being monitored by the health department's communicable disease staff.
Little additional information is known about the new cases announced this week, and public health officials are firm in their decisions to not reveal any information which they say may out the identity of a patient. They cite the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which bars medical professionals from revealing health-related information about an individual to the press or public.
It's unknown whether the six known cases in the county have any relation to each other, or contact with other infected individuals before they tested positive. It's also unknown if the people are hospitalized or in isolation elsewhere, since Northwestern Medicine health system has declined to release any information on the subject.
An second NIU student tested positive Wednesday, though that second person is not in DeKalb County, confirmed Lisa Miner, NIU spokesperson.
For a look at total number of COVID-19 cases statewide, check out this map which is updated daily with numbers from the Illinois Department of Public Health and local health departments in Shaw Media territory.
For more local news, visit Daily Chronicle at https://www.daily-chronicle.com.