When she started showing symptoms herself after giving birth, the man confessed to what he did
The steps we need to take in order to slow down the spread of COVID-19 are hard. By now, most states have ordered a “shelter in place” or “safer at home” mandate, which means people need to self-isolate and avoid leaving their house unless it’s an absolute necessity. While people are generally still allowed to visit loved ones at the hospital, strict rules have been put into place that help mitigate the risk of someone spreading the virus. If you are showing symptoms, you absolutely cannot enter the hospital. Since the coronavirus is extremely contagious, the chances of that individual getting others sick is pretty high. One man, who decided to visit his pregnant wife at the maternity ward, chose not to follow protocol.
On March 31, Democrat & Chronicle reported that a man visited the Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, New York and attempted to “obscure his COVID-19 symptoms so he could see his pregnant wife, who was in the maternity ward.” It’s unclear how many times he visited her and for how long this went on. What we do know is that the man’s wife began showing virus symptoms herself after giving birth, which was when the man confessed that he had been visiting her while ill.
“The mother became symptomatic shortly after delivering. That’s when the significant other admitted his potential exposure and that he was feeling symptomatic,” Chip Partner, a spokesperson for the University of Rochester Medicine, explained.
As for now, no hospital staff employees have tested positive for COVID-19. Partner confirmed to HuffPost, saying, “One staff member developed symptoms, was quarantined at home, and later tested negative for COVID-19.” It’s also been confirmed that the couple was isolated from other patients, as they were staying in a private maternity room the entire time. What happened to the new parents? According to Partner, they were asked to self-quarantine and are awaiting their coronavirus test results.
The Strong Memorial Hospital, which operated on an honor system, has swiftly changed their visitor policies. After the incident, The University of Rochester Medicine group (which includes Strong Memorial Hospital) announced that no visitors will be allowed in the hospital. They’ll allow some exceptions (the exceptions weren’t specified), but visitors will be heavily screened (temperatures and COVID-19 symptoms will be checked) before entering.
For expecting mothers specifically, the hospital allows only one support person, as long as they pass the twice-daily screening. Additionally, they won’t be allowed to leave the patient’s room without the patient with them.
While it seems like one man’s poor decision (luckily) didn’t negatively impact those around him, the fact is that it most definitely could have. While being put in a situation like that must have been incredibly difficult for the man, he endangered countless lives at the hospital. Failing to distance ourselves from others, especially if we’re experiencing symptoms, is how we put lives at risk and elongate the COVID-19 quarantine in general. The moral of the story? Please try to stay home right now.