EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - A resident of the Tri-State’s oldest and largest service provider for homeless men has tested positive for COVID-19.
Evansville Rescue Mission confirmed the case on Wednesday. The organization is now working with the health department to contact trace.
We are told more than two dozen other people living there, likely contacts of that man, have now been tested as a precaution.
Leaders tell 14 News they have been working hard over the last few months to keep the virus out.
”I guess I was a little disheartened because I had hoped that, somehow, we would escape that happening to the Evansville Rescue mission,” President/CEO Tracy Gorman shared.
We are learning the man who tested positive was showing signs of the virus and is getting treatment in a local hospital.
222 beds are inside the residence center. However, because of the pandemic, the organization has dropped the number being served to 100 or fewer. As of Wednesday, they are sitting around 72.
”We hated to do that,” Gorman added. “We wanted to use our facilities but, by the same token, we’ve worked hard to keep everyone safe.”
27 additional people at the facility have now been tested through contact tracing and are in quarantine. Gorman says the first result is back and is negative.
Since mid-March, added safety protocols have been in effect related to social distancing and sanitizing its 33,000 square feet of facilities.
”Even throughout the facility, we’ve averaged about a 15-feet span between residents when they’re sleeping,” Gorman calculated.
Evansville Rescue Mission residents have flexibility to go out into the community to perhaps look for jobs or other resources. Gorman anticipates some internal restrictions may need to be tightened up until those test results are returned.