More Than 100,000 Health Workers In U.S. Have Contracted COVID-19

Published: Thursday, November 12, 2020 - 4:35pm
Updated: Friday, November 13, 2020 - 7:34am
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More than 100,000 health care workers in the U.S. have tested positive for COVID-19 and at least 641 have died, according to a report by state health officials and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Based on data from Feb. 12 to July 16, that's 10 times the cases and nearly 24 times the deaths reported by the CDC in April.

It's also likely a low estimate since job status was known in fewer than one-quarter of cases. Among those, the majority  occurred among workers in nursing homes or residential care facilities.

Deaths were most common among men, persons aged 65 years or older, and Asian or Black adults. Among the dead, 92% had an underlying health condition. More than half had cardiovascular disease or diabetes, and one-third had both. 

As reported in the journal JAMA, the study's authors emphasized the importance in health care settings of wearing masks, screening for illness and granting sick leave. They also called for greater recognition of how social inequities can worsen risks for some workers.

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