AUSTIN (KXAN) — St. David’s HealthCare confirmed Wednesday one of its physicians had tested positive for COVID-19, after a KXAN investigator began asking questions of local hospitals about whether any staff have tested positive.
The hospital said it immediately notified public health authorities and it is working to trace any potential exposure to patients and other healthcare workers. It said the exposure did not happen because of a breach of hospital protocols and it will “continue to follow our best practices for preventing the spread of the coronavirus.”
KXAN initially questioned St. David’s on Tuesday, after receiving a viewer tip about one of its physicians testing positive for the virus.
Austin Public Health reported there are currently 23 positive cases in Travis County as of Wednesday morning. It is not known if this doctor is among them.
“The majority of the interaction between the physician and patients/staff occurred in areas where most healthcare workers were wearing personal protective equipment (PPE), which reduces the risk of exposure to a very low level,” St. David’s HealthCare wrote. “We will contact patients and providers who may require further observation and/or testing based on our risk assessment.”
KXAN also asked St. David’s about its quarantine protocols for staff and physicians, and if it has cancelled elective surgeries. Those questions were not answered in the hospital’s statement.
A spokesperson said the hospital would not be releasing further information at this time.
The Washington Post has reported dozens of healthcare workers across the nation have gotten sick with COVID-19.
The City of Austin regularly updates its public page with coronavirus information, city bulletins, resources and a tally of number of confirmed cases in Travis County.