NY Dad Hides COVID-19 Symptoms to Visit Wife Giving Birth
Hospitals locally have put a 'no visitor policy' into place to help flatten the COVID-19 curve. But in cases, some people just don't get when to stay away, or think the rules don't apply to them.
The Democrat and Chronicle in Rochester reports a man who had been exposed to the coronavirus, and who was himself feeling sick, hid his symptoms from staff at Strong Memorial Hospital so he could join his expectant wife in the maternity center. He was considered her "support individual," permitted to be present during labor, and throughout the post-partum period until discharge.
What made him confess? After his wife gave birth, she too started displaying symptoms.
UR Medicine spokesman Chip Partner said their visitor policy before this incident was purely on an honor system, now they're checking temperatures of all visitors as well. Previously, visitors were asked if they'd been in proximity to anyone who might have COVID-19 and if their own health was good. If they attested that all was well, the visitors were allowed in.
He also said that due to privacy laws, whether the mother, father or newborn actually developed COVID-19 could not be disclosed.
Here's my main question: what was going through this guys head?
I get it. Your wife just gave birth to your child. I haven't experienced it myself, but the thought of all the parents who aren't able to meet their children due to the restrictions that some hospitals have is heartbreaking. But guess what - there's ways to get around that. There's technology that allows you to communicate with people when you can't be around them, aka FaceTime.
Did he not realize that he was putting everyone at risk? Not only his wife and newborn child, but the staff at the hospital who deal with other patients daily?
Maternity staff at the hospital were informed of their potential exposure but allowed to continue working as long as they remained asymptomatic, Partner said. They were instructed to wear masks at all times and to take their temperatures throughout their shift.
This isn't one of those times where you get to make your own rules. You don't get to decide that you "don't need to social distance" or follow the policies in place because just because you want to meet your child. Heck, maybe you're healthy. Regardless, there's vulnerable people among us.
To those reading this: don't be like this guy. Whether you are sick, your children are sick, if someone in your household has tested positive, if you are an older person or a person with a serious underlying health condition, the CDC's main piece of advice is to STAY HOME.
It's time people start listening so we can soon get back to our lives. So people CAN go visit their family members in the hospital.