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The coronavirus has infected a staggering number of hospital staffers on Long Island, according to a report Saturday.
The paper says its tally excludes eight other Long Island hospitals that refused to say how many staffers have tested positive for the virus.
The coronavirus outbreak in the two suburban counties has been “like fire spreading,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said a week ago.
More than 42,000 people have tested positive for COVID-19 on Long Island and 1,250 have died.
Those sickened include Stony Brook University Hospital’s chief of trauma, emergency surgery and surgical critical care, who returned to work part-time on Sunday after falling ill for three weeks, according to Newsday.
“The fear that everyone is experiencing is real,” Dr. James Vosswinkel told the paper. “This is an unknown virus.”
The paper reported interviewing nurses and hospital union representatives who say the shortages of protective equipment have compounded the inherent dangers that workers face and led to additional infections.
Two Long Island hospital nurses are known to have died after contracting the coronavirus, along with at least five other medical support staffers, according to the paper.
Nurse John Abruzzo, 63, died April 2 after caring for COVID-19 patients at Huntington Hospital.
ICU nurse Ali Dennis Guillermo, 44, died Tuesday. He worked at Long Island Community Hospital in East Patchogue.
The day after Guillermo’s death, Richard Margulis, the hospital’s chief executive, sent an email to everyone who works at the hospital that said: “You are all heroes, getting our community through this terrible storm and you are appreciated beyond words.”
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