SOMERS – A University of Wisconsin-Parkside staff member has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, the university, and the Kenosha County Division of Health announced Wednesday. The staff member is in isolation per Wisconsin Department of Health Services‘ recommendation.

The Kenosha County Division of Health is currently working with UW-Parkside to assist in identifying and reach close contacts of this infected individual. Close contacts include those who:

  • Have had direct physical contact with the individual (e.g.: a hug or a handshake).
  • Were within 6 feet of the individual for more than 15 minutes.
  • Have had contact with respiratory secretions from the infected individual (e.g.: were coughed/sneezed on, had contact with dirty tissue or shared a drinking glass, food, towels or other personal items.

Anyone identified as a close contact of the individual will also be required to quarantine for 14 days from the last date of exposure. Those who do not receive a phone call from the Division of Health were likely not in contact with the COVID-19 positive individual and are therefore not considered to be in a higher-risk group.

“UW-Parkside has prioritized ensuring the health and safety of the campus community while delivering our academic mission,” Dr. Renee Kirby, UWP Director of Student Health, Counseling and Disability Services, said in a news release. “As we transition between the summer and fall terms, most faculty and staff are still working remotely. UW-Parkside requires all members of the learning community to wear face coverings in campus facilities; maintain appropriate social distancing; and wash their hands frequently.

“The University plans to maintain a dashboard of COVID-19 test results performed on campus and of positive COVID-19 cases reported by the UW-Parkside learning community.”

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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.