Hospital Places Newborn Baby in Isolation After NICU Nurse Tests Positive for COVID-19

After a nurse tested positive for the novel coronavirus, one baby in the neonatal intensive care unit of an Alabama hospital has since been placed in isolation.

After being born on February 20, Emmarie Grace Waltman was placed in the NICU of the University of South Alabama Women’s Hospital due to feeding issues, according to her father, Brandon Waltman, who then spoke with CNN.

nicu nurse tests positive for covid-19, hospital places newborn baby in isolation
Image via Brandon Waltman

But when Brandon went to visit his daughter Monday, he was told she was taken into a separate room to be isolated as a nurse tested positive for COVID-19. Further information on the individual has yet to be released.

And while the NICU doctors and nurses wore gloves and masks, Brandon said he “felt like it was inevitable” that his daughter’s care might be affected in some way, given the impact of coronavirus on medical centers.

The hospital will only allow one visitor per patient at a time in an effort to lessen exposure, according to CNN.

hospital places newborn baby in isolation after nicu nurse tests positive for covid-19
Image via Shutterstock

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In the interim, Emmarie’s parents have to visit her one at a time in a low-pressure room.

“It’s rough. But today is about pushing so some of this doesn’t happen again to her or God forbid anybody else,” Brandon said.

Brandon shares how he hopes he can bring his daughter back home to Mississippi so the family can quarantine together.

hospital places newborn baby in isolation after nicu nurse tests positive for covid-19
Image via Brandon Waltman

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“With the times being like they are, we feel like we’re better left at home where we know who’s coming in contact with her,” he shared.

His daughter does not currently show any symptoms of the coronavirus, but the hospital has not yet told Brandon when Emmarie can be released.

“I don’t think she’s going to test positive,” he added. “She’s one of the… probably the biggest and the healthiest babies in the NICU.”

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