Lightfoot urges residents to sign up for Smart911 as number of first responders to test positive for coronavirus rises to 29

As of Saturday, at least 21 Chicago Police Department employees and at least eight Chicago Fire Department employees have tested positive for COVID-19.

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Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks during a news conference at City Hall about the city’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks during a press conference at City Hall about the city’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, March 23, 2020.

Ashlee Rezin Garcia/Sun-Times file

As police, firefighters and paramedics across the city continue to be exposed to the coronavirus, Lori Lightfoot Saturday urged Chicagoans to create a profile on Smart911, which will alert first responders to a caller’s medical information — including whether they are under quarantine — while they respond to calls for service. 

The “free, voluntary and secure service” lets people input their medical information so that in the event that someone needs to call 911, the call taker will automatically see the caller’s profile, including whether they are under quarantine or are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, according to a statement from the mayor’s office.

The request comes as the Chicago Fire Department said Saturday that three more department personnel had contracted the coronavirus, bring the total number of cases to eight. The Chicago Police Department said Saturday that 20 officers and one civilian employee have tested positive.

“Each and every day, our Chicago police officers, firefighters and emergency medical personnel collectively answer the call to service, and by using OEMC’s Smart911 service, they’ll be better-equipped to respond to emergencies and keep our residents safe,” Lightfoot said. “During this unprecedented health crisis, it’s our duty to support our first responders and ensure they have the resources and information they need to do their job safely and effectively. That’s why I urge all residents to utilize this service and fulfill that commitment.” 

Residents can also download the Smart911 app and receive check-in messages from the Chicago Department of Public Health, the mayor’s office said.

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