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Lee officials ask residents to take the pledge

By Staff | Apr 3, 2020

Lee County leaders are teaming up to combat the spread of COVID-19 by launching an area-wide social media campaign to raise awareness.

Lee County’s “I Took the Pledge!” online movement will launch later today.

Entities involved with the county’s campaign include Lee Health, Florida Department of Health, Lee County School District, Lee County Sheriff’s Office and United Way.

Lee Health President and CEO Dr. Larry Antonucci on Friday laid out the five ways residents can contribute to the mitigation of spreading the virus:

* Stay home as much as possible

*Use social distancing when you have to go out for essential purposes

*Use proper handwashing techniques

*Not gather in groups of 10 of more

*Stay calm, stay kind and stay safe

“I urge everyone in our community to join me in taking this pledge in our continued fight against the coronavirus,” Antonucci said Friday.

The county has launched a website, www.leegov.com/pledge, with a video message from County Commissioner Brian Hamman, Antonucci, Superintendent Dr. Greg Adkins and other county leaders.

On the website, users can fill out a form and add their name to the list of people who took the pledge.

Those who take the pledge will receive an email with graphics attached to take their own “I took the Pledge!” photo or video to share on social media using the hashtags #ITookthePledge and #StayHomeSWFL.

Lee Health has four more positive patients in its care today, bringing the total to 49.

Seventeen patients who had tested positive have been discharged.

Lee Health has submitted a total of 3,635 specimens for testing, yielding 183 presumptive positives since March 6.

There are 220 Lee Health employees quarantined at home. The number of employees who have tested positive remains at eight.

Mobile Collection sites at Page Field and Cape Coral Sports Complex collected 223 specimens Thursday while Lee Telemedicine had 400 total visits.

Lee Health currently has 245 patients under investigation.

As of 11 a.m. Friday, there are 9,585 cases of the new coronavirus confirmed in Florida as well as 19 additional deaths reported in Lee, Broward, Charlotte, Dade, Highlands, Monroe, Orange, Palm Beach, Pinellas and Putnam counties, according to FDOH.

In Lee County, 289 individuals have tested positive as of 11 a.m. Friday- 116 in Fort Myers, 61 in Cape Coral, 33 in Bonita Springs, 37 in Lehigh Acres, 13 in Estero, 10 in North Fort Myers, three in Sanibel, three on Fort Myers Beach and one on Captiva. Two positives were not classified by community.

“The next few weeks will be tough, but we will prevail over this virus together. A month into this fight, I have never been prouder to call Southwest Florida home,” Antonucci said.

He also relayed news of more shipments of supplies from the national strategic stockpile over the last two days.

“Supplies will continue to be a challenge for all health care systems, but by following CDC guidelines we have been able to conserve personal protective equipment to ensure that our employees stay safe while caring for their patients,” Antonucci said. “Getting the supplies we need will be a constant challenge going forward but as of today, we are doing OK.”

-Connect with this reporter on Twitter: @haddad_cj