* From Speaker Welch’s chief of staff Jessica Basham…
Good morning, members and staff:
I am a confirmed positive.
I have been tested daily, and yesterday I received notice that my rapid test was positive. I have been made aware of 2 other confirmed positives, and my PCR results came back, confirming my own positive.
Please self-isolate for 14 days, as I recommended in both my earlier email and in the written guidance sent to you before returning to Springfield.
While I had no symptoms yesterday morning, I did start to show mild symptoms yesterday evening, and I’m currently quarantining at home. I plan to get some rest, and will respond to emails as soon as possible.
Here’s some info from DPH concerning quarantine recommendations. Additional information can be found at the links below. I will share further info I receive as it becomes available.
Generally, the CDC currently recommends a quarantine period of 14 days. Further, local public health authorities determine and establish quarantine options for their jurisdictions and may decide to continue using a 14-day period and/or shortened options for certain lower risk close contacts. However, the following options to shorten quarantine are acceptable alternatives:
• Quarantine can end after Day 10 without testing and if no symptoms have been reported during any day of the daily monitoring period. With this strategy, residual post-quarantine transmission risk is estimated to be about 1% with an upper limit of about 10%.
• Quarantine can end after Day 7 if a RT (Reverse Transcriptase)-PCR test is negative and if no symptoms were reported during any day of the daily monitoring period. The earliest a specimen may be collected and tested would be on Day 6 with quarantine being discontinued no earlier than Day 8. With this strategy, the residual post-quarantine transmission risk is estimated to be about 5% with an upper limit of about 12%. This option is not recommended for children in daycares or K-12 schools.
With both options the following additional criteria through Day 14 must be met:
• correct and consistent mask use (including within homes),
• social distancing,
• hand hygiene,
• environmental cleaning and disinfection,
• avoiding crowds,
• ensuring adequate indoor ventilation,
• monitoring for symptoms of COVID-19 illness, and
• minimizing contact with persons at increased risk for severe illness, including vulnerable and congregate populations.
Hang in there, Jessica. We’re all pulling for you.
…Adding… This may not turn out well at all…
Welch himself tested positive for the virus in November. Basham could not be reached for comment to provide any further details about the Hillside Democrat, the person who tested positive this week or whom they may have come into contact with.
But Steve Brown, a spokesman for the speaker’s office, said Welch was tested on Thursday, the results were negative, and he would self-quarantine.