The coronavirus continues to batter the U.S. health care workforce. 5 things to know:
- More than 60,000 health care workers have been infected, and close to 300 have died from COVID-19, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- The numbers mark a staggering increase from six weeks ago when the CDC first released data on coronavirus infections and deaths among nurses, doctors, pharmacists, EMTs, technicians and other medical employees. On April 15, the agency reported 27 deaths and more than 9,000 cases of infection in health care workers.
- “It is underreported,” says Zenei Cortez, president of National Nurses United (NNU), the largest union of nurses in the country. The union has compiled its own count of more than 530 health care fatalities from COVID-19, using publicly available information like obituaries.
- A recent NNU surveyof 23,000 nurses found that more than 80% had not yet been tested for the coronavirus.
- In early May, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo touted the results of an antibody testing survey that showed a 12% infection rate among health care workers in New York City, compared with the 20% infection rate among residents citywide.
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