CHICAGO (CBS) — In the latest step to reduce the spread of the coronavirus outbreak, city officials have ordered anyone in Chicago who has tested positive for COVID-19, or who has symptoms of the illness to stay home.
The order, signed by Chicago Public Health Director Dr. Allison Arwady, provides only a few exceptions; those who are sick would still be able to go out for medical care, or to get medicine or food. However, they would be prohibited from going to work or any other group settings.
Those who violate the order would face possible citations.
“During this unprecedented crisis, we must move quickly and in the best interest of the public. Restricting the movements of those who have COVID-19 or who are symptomatic is the best way to prevent the virus from spreading further,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement Thursday.
The mayor’s office said the order would remain in effect until the Chicago Department of Public Health determines the COVID-19 threat to the public has diminished.
“This move may seem severe to some but in this highly evolving situation it’s absolutely what we need to do at this time as we work to contain this outbreak,” Arwady said in a statement.
COVID-19 is an acute respiratory disease; and symptoms include fever, coughing, shortness of breath, nasal congestion, sore throat, body aches, and unusual fatigue. The mayor’s office said a person who has tested positive for the virus is considered ill until they are free of a fever of more than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit and any other symptoms for at least 72 hours.
Anyone ordered to stay home who does not have other access to food can call 311 for help.
Other restrictions already in place for the COVID-19 pandemic include the closure of all Illinois schools, a shutdown of dine-in service at all Illinois restaurants and bars, and the cancellation of any gatherings of 50 or more people.
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