Kaiser hospital officials said that between December 27 and January 1, 43 emergency staff members at Kaiser Permanente in San Jose have testing positive for COVID-19.
On Christmas Day, an allegedly asymptomatic staff member came into the ER wearing an air-powered costume with a fan, which the hospital is investigating as the possible cause of the outbreak, NBC LA reported.
“Using our infection proven protocols, we are investigating the outbreak and using contact tracing to personally notify and test any staff or patients who were exposed during this time period based on CDC and public health guidelines,” a spokesperson said in a statement obtained by NBC LA.
An ER employee believes that there may be another reason for the outbreak.
“They were doing respiratory treatments inside a room that they’re not supposed to,” the employee said.
Although the hospital reported that they’d done a deep cleaning following the event, one unidentified employee says, “that’s a lie.” “All they did was come in and do a deep cleaning of the small break room. They didn’t do the other parts of the emergency department and there was no deep cleaning.”
The hospital reportedly said that it will no longer allow air-powered costumes at any facilities as a result of the contamination.