Health officials warn of a “potentially large outbreak” after a jump in COVID-19 cases involving volleyball leagues in bars and restaurants in Lake County.
Lake County Health Department said it was investigating several cases of coronavirus related to adult volleyball leagues.
Fourteen people who played or watched volleyball at Jesse Oaks Food & Drink across Lake Gages in September tested positive for the virus.
Many people among these cases report to employees that they have also played volleyball in other bars and restaurants.
“We are currently working hard to talk to infected people and notify close contacts who have been identified,” said Dr. Sana Ahmed, a medical epidemiologist with Lake County Health Department.
“However, nearly 200 volleyball players and spectators may have been on display. This could potentially be a major outbreak, and we need public help to limit the spread of the virus, “Ahmed said.
Those who played volleyball or visited Jesse Oaks in September were asked to quarantine at home for 14 days from their last game.
“If you are still within your quarantine period, take the COVID-19 molecular (PCR) test at least 5 days after your last game. Get tested earlier if symptoms develop, “said a statement from the health department.
The health department said that during quarantine a person should stay at home, limit contact with others in his home, avoid having visitors and wear a face blanket if he has to leave to seek medical help.
“A negative test result does not shorten the 14-day quarantine period, as the virus can take up to 14 days to be detected by the COVID-19 test,” the health department added.
Jesse Oaks has stopped all volleyball activities for 14 days and can only resume once in accordance with state guidelines after that time.
“Under the current phase of the state plan, volleyball is considered a medium-risk sport and competitive matches between teams are not allowed,” said Larry Mackie, director of environmental health at Lake County Health Department.
“Failure to follow these guidelines puts public health at risk, prolongs the pandemic and has the potential to impose additional constraints on local businesses that work so hard to protect their employees and customers,” Mackie said.
“We continue to address any complaints from facilities that do not comply with these guidelines, and we work closely with business owners to help them work safely. However, when the business does not cooperate, we have no choice but to take coercive measures, “he added.
As of Monday, 16,960 Lake County residents had tested positive for the disease and 464 people had died in the county.