Rock Island County Administrator Jim Snider confirmed the news Wednesday, saying he is not aware if anyone has been hospitalized as a result. He declined to offer any details regarding gender or age range.
"I think all nursing homes across the country are dealing with this," Snider said. "We are working diligently to keep our residents and employees safe.
"This is all over the place; it's such a fluid environment we live in. Any employee who has tested positive has been quarantined. Employees are using PPE (personal protective equipment) to protect our residents."
Snider said the county-owned nursing home, 4343 Kennedy Drive, East Moline, has 131 residents living at the facility.
AFSCME staff representative Audie Schmidt confirmed two employees tested positive for coronavirus a few weeks ago. One employee is no longer working and is self-isolating at home. The other employee has recovered and has since tested negative. That employee is back at work.
Schmidt was informed by Hope Creek Interim Administrator Trudy Whittington that an isolation unit has been set up in a wing that was previously closed where the four residents are receiving care.
Whittington did not return requests for comment.
Schmidt expressed frustration in trying to work with the county to take more steps in protecting the staff and residents of Hope Creek.
"We've been working tirelessly trying to work with this employer," she said. "We've been working on this for a month, and we've been asking for things that would better protect residents and staff. Most employers I work with have been great, but Rock Island County has been the exception. There are so many issues still on the table."
There are 160 AFSCME employees at Hope Creek, Schmidt said. The agency nurses at the facility are receiving hazard pay, but AFSCME employees are not.
"It's been insulting to the hard-working staff at Hope Creek," Schmidt said. "They are sacrificing their health and the health of their family members. It's been a rough couple of weeks."
The Rock Island County Health Department on Wednesday reported 21 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total to 302. The department reported another death, bringing the total number of deaths to six in the county.
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