MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A St. Jude spokesperson says an employee with the hospital has tested positive for COVID-19.
St. Jude says the testing was done at St. Jude, and reported to the Shelby County Health Department. They say they are working with the health department to make sure “appropriate follow-up measures are taken.”
The employee is on self-quarantine at home.
From a release from St. Jude: “The health and safety of our patients, families and employees are our highest priority. Last night, a St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital employee who works in patient care tested positive for COVID-19. The testing was done at St. Jude, and the result has been reported to the Shelby County Health Department. Due to privacy and confidentiality laws, we cannot share personal information. The employee is on self-quarantine at home.
We are working in partnership with the Shelby County Health Department to make sure appropriate follow-up measures are taken. Soon after the virus emerged in Asia, St. Jude began preparing for COVID-19 and implemented its Emergency Operations Plan. We remain focused on ensuring the health and safety of those we serve, and providing helpful information through our public resources.”
Coronavirus in Context:
The majority of people who have coronavirus will get better without any long-term effects, according to an Oregon doctor. About 80% of cases tend to be mild. In these cases, symptoms diminish over five to seven days, although people are still capable of transmitting the disease. But there are many people with a higher risk of having a more severe disease if they are diagnosed with coronavirus, including those with heart disease, diabetes, asthma and other vascular disease problems.
Also, most children who get it have mild symptoms.
WHO officials said March 9 that of about 80,000 people who have been sickened by COVID-19 in China, more than 70% have recovered and been discharged from hospitals.
Patients are typically released when they test negative twice for the virus within 24 hours, meaning they’re no longer carrying the virus, although some countries may be using a slightly different definition, that may include when people have no more respiratory symptoms or a clear CT scan.
The World Health Organization said it could take considerably longer for people to be “recovered,” depending on the severity of disease.
Dr. Mike Ryan, the World Health Organization's emergencies chief, said it can take up to six weeks for people to fully recover from COVID-19 infections, which could include pneumonia and other respiratory problems in serious cases. He said the numbers of reported patients have not always been systematically provided to World Health Organization although the U.N. health agency is asking every country with cases for further information.
To put the coronavirus numbers in context, millions of Americans get the flu every single year and there are thousands of flu deaths annually.
Since October 2019, the CDC estimates around 32 million Americans have gotten the flu. That’s one in every 10 Americans.