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Staff member at Old Orchard Beach High School tests positive for COVID-19

Staff and students may have been exposed to the virus and the Maine CDC said they are informing the district of the positive test out of an abundance of caution.

OLD ORCHARD BEACH, Maine — A staff member at Old Orchard Beach High School has tested positive for coronavirus.

RSU 23 Superintendent John Suttie sent a letter to the school district's community Wednesday morning. Suttie said he received the following letter from the Maine CDC (also on Wednesday morning):

"This letter is to inform you that a staff member at Old Orchard Beach High School recently tested positive for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Staff and students may have been exposed to the virus and we are informing you out of an abundance of caution. Please monitor yourself for signs and symptoms. Call a healthcare provider if you develop symptoms. It is important that you call a healthcare facility before you show up in person. Testing is not recommended if you do not have symptoms.

Maine CDC conducts investigations for all positive test results for COVID-19. Maine CDC will contact you directly if you are identified as a close contact of someone that tested positive.

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness that ranges from mild to severe and causes fever, cough, and shortness of breath. It can be more severe in adults 60 years and older and in those with underlying conditions. The virus mainly spreads when an infected person coughs or sneezes and the uninfected person breathes in the virus.

Maine CDC recommends preventive measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This includes proper handwashing with soap and warm water. This is especially important after using the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. When soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. You should also avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands and avoid close contact with people who are sick. Cover your cough or sneeze into a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. Stay home if you are sick.

For general questions dial 211 (or 1-866-811-5695). You can also text your ZIP code to 898-211 or email info@211maine.org . Call a healthcare provider for questions about your symptoms.

More information can be found at www.maine.gov/dhhs/coronavirus or www.cdc.gov/coronavirus."

RSU 23 schools are currently closed until at least March 27. The schools in the district are Jameson Elementary School, Loranger Memorial School, and Old Orchard Beach High School.

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