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COVID-19 outbreak at Claremore Veterans Center

Posted at 5:28 PM, Jul 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-29 14:55:08-04

CLAREMORE, Okla. — The Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs is responding to a COVID-19 outbreak at the Claremore Veterans Center.

Officials said about 62 veterans and 21 employees at the center tested positive for the coronavirus.

The department said 34 of the residents are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms, 18 have moderate to severe symptoms and 10 residents have passed away since July 1. More than of the 30 residents are hospitalized.

The department said it thinks the source is an asymptomatic employee who didn’t know they were positive, and they’ve been following all guidelines.

“We check temperatures as people come in the door. We don’t allow visitors in. All the CDC suggestion, or guidance if you will, has been followed, and that’s how we would do that,” said Joel Kintsel, an executive director with the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs.

Numbers are lower at the state’s other six veterans centers, with three not having any positive cases, and the other three with one positive case each.

There’s still no visitation at any of the centers. Officials believe the outbreak at the Claremore center is almost over.

There have only been two positive cases in the past 72 hours. The Oklahoma State Department of Health also did an assessment of the center and no citations were issued.

“Protecting the health and lives of our veterans is my top priority,” Governor Kevin Stitt said. “I applaud the work of OSDH and ODVA to get the situation in Claremore under control, and I remain committed to providing whatever resources necessary to give our heroic veterans the care they deserve.”

Watch the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs respond to the COVID-19 outbreak below.

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