County administrator issues statement on Covid-19 cases in nursing homes

Escambia County Administrator Janice Gilley says the state surgeon general Dr. Scott A. Rivkees is the only one who can release name of coronavirus-infected facility in Escambia County. She encourages  nursing homes to work with state surgeon general to disclose cases in their facilities:

“We empathize with the families and friends who have loved ones in our nursing home facilities within the county and have concerns about their health and exposure. At this time, we have been advised by the Florida Department of Health that disclosure to the public regarding long term care and nursing home facilities affected by covid remains in the hands of the state surgeon general.

“The county continues to work alongside the Florida Department of Health, the lead agency for a public health incident. Since the beginning of this pandemic, we have communicated with them to release whatever information they can, but we also understand there are privacy laws in which they must follow.

“We strongly encourage nursing homes to work with the state surgeon general to publicly disclose if there have been positive COVID-19 cases in their facility in the Escambia county community. We believe it is in the public’s best interest for the facilities be as transparent as possible within the extent of the state and federal laws.”