Pritzker office staffer tests positive for COVID-19

The staff member was not in close contact with Gov. Pritzker Monday, or in previous days, and all staff who were identified as having been so will follow CDC protocol, Pritzker’s office said.

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Gov. J.B. Pritzker at a daily COVID-19 briefing at the James R. Thompson Center in November.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker at a daily COVID-19 briefing at the James R. Thompson Center in November.

Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times file

An employee in Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s office tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday, a spokeswoman for the governor said.

The staff member was not in close contact with Pritzker Monday, or in previous days, and all staff who were identified as having been so will follow U.S. Centers for Disease Control protocol, Jordan Abudayyeh, a spokeswoman for Pritzker’s office, said in a statement.

“The Governor’s Office continues to follow COVID-19 safety protocols including testing staff multiple times per week, weekly deep cleaning procedures, mask wearing, social distancing, and limiting the number of staff reporting to the office for in person work,” Abudayyeh said in the statement.

Since Pritzker had no direct contact with the staffer, he will not be self-isolating, his office said.

Spokespeople for Pritzker’s office did not immediately respond to questions about how many people were in contact with the person, and if they would need to quarantine.

The person who tested positive had recently received a first dose of a coronavirus vaccine. Pritzker received the Johnson & Johnson one-shot vaccine last month in Springfield.

It’s the fourth time one of the governor’s staffers has been reported as testing positive for the virus.

Two previous instances — in May and September of last year — required Pritzker to self-isolate for a period of time. In May, he said he would work from home for an “appropriate isolation period.” In September, he did so for 14 days.

In November, a day after announcing a staff member tested positive for the virus, Pritzker and other staffers tested negative for the coronavirus. At the time, his office said he would self self-isolate for a few days until he received the results of an additional test.

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