Authorities to probe health workers after 10 newborns test positive for COVID-19 in Romania

Romanian authorities on Tuesday commenced investigation into a maternity unit in the country after 10 newborns tested positive for the novel coronavirus, with the suspicion they contracted the virus from healthcare staff.

Health minister, Nelu Tataru who revealed this noted that none of the mothers tested positive to the disease, breeding suspicion that the babies were infected by health workers.

“The mothers tested negative, but the babies tested positive so we have to consider their contacts with medical staff,” Mr Tataru said in an interview with the Antena 3 TV station late on Monday.

The babies have no symptoms and all but one of them, together with their mothers, have gone into self-isolation at home.

The local DSP chief has already been dismissed.

“For the past two days I have felt like I am living in a horror film,” one of the mothers told the local pressalert.ro website.

“The staff were not wearing masks,” she said, adding that the mothers had heard on Wednesday through unofficial channels that there was a case of coronavirus in the hospital.

“On Thursday the hospital was disinfected with us inside,” she said.

The unit in the western Romanian city of Timisoara was briefly placed under quarantine on March 31 but was reopened the next day on the orders of the local DSP, which insisted at the time that there was “no risk of infection for patients or doctors” even though 13 members of staff had already tested positive.

There are more than 4,400 confirmed cases in Romania so far and 180 people have died.
Around 700 of those infected are healthcare workers.

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