Watch CBS News

Coronavirus Impacting Medical Staff: 124 UC Davis Health Care Workers Put In Self-Quarantine

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A top Sacramento County Health Department official says to expect millions of coronavirus cases in the U.S. this year, but he says that number is not as concerning as you may think.

This comes while medical professionals on the frontline of the virus are concerned about their own health.

"If healthcare providers aren't protected, they become ill and have to go home....and then there's no one at the hospitals to take care of patients," Registered Nurse Becky Cherry-May said.

California's Nurse Union says they're getting sick of fighting their bosses at the hospital for fairness on the job in the middle of the coronavirus outbreak. National Nurses United also issued a press release on Friday about hospitals' unpreparedness.

"I'm not sure we're prepared in our local hospitals to face an outbreak," Cherry-May said.

READ ALSO: Negative Pressure Rooms Could Help In Battle To Contain Coronavirus

As more suspected patients show up in hospitals in our area, more medical staff are being affected. This week at UC Davis Medical Center, 36 Registered Nurses and 88 other health care workers had to self-quarantine after coming into contact with the nation's first unknown-origin coronavirus case.

Nurses say hospitals are to blame for not developing a safer work environment, shielding them from the infected during the health crisis.

"If all the staff people at the hospital are at risk for contracting a disease, then we bring it to the community, and the community becomes at risk," Cherry-May said.

ALSO: Who Is Responsible For Tracking Who Comes Into Contact With An Infected Coronavirus Patient?

Sacramento County's top doctor Peter Beilenson believes the number of cases isn't slowing down, in fact, this year alone, he expects millions of reported coronavirus cases. But before you consider this a doomsday model, slow down, because he says 81% of cases of this coronavirus strain are actually mild or asymptomatic.

He says in most of those millions of cases, a majority of the sick will heal themselves with their body's immune system. Sacramento county is currently dealing with a growing list of its own cases.

"The bottom line is this is not as serious of a condition as many people have been lead to believe," Dr. Beilenson said.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.