ROME—CBS News Rome correspondent Seth Doane confirmed that he has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, but he didn’t contract it in Italy, where cases have nearly hit 25,000 in the last three weeks. He says he got it when he was at the network headquarters in New York.
Doane spoke about his experience on Monday on CBS This Morning, explaining that when he had learned that he was exposed to at least three of the six CBS News employees with COVID-19 when he returned to Rome last week, he self-quarantined.
Then he said he developed a “worrying” cough that he knew was not normal, had body aches, but only a slight sporadic fever. Because he was considered a high risk for exposure, he called the Italian coronavirus hotline and they sent in medical professionals in full hazmat suits right away. Doane tested positive, but his husband tested negative, meaning the two are quarantining from each other inside their apartment.
Doane, who is a personal friend of this reporter, said that the psychological part has been harder than the physical part so far, especially when he had to break the news to anyone he had been in contact with that he had it. “I’ve tried to call or email or contact anyone I’ve been in contact with to say, ‘You’ve got to take this seriously, you’ve got to quarantine.’”
Since there is no treatment for COVID-19, Doane has to simply wait it out, he says. His main symptom is tightness in his chest, “like I had worked out,” he told The Daily Beast. “And that continues.”
Doane says that an Italian health authority now calls him two or three times a day to find out if he has a fever. If his symptoms don’t get worse, he can stay at home and ride out the course of the virus. He will have to test negative at least twice over a 24-hour period of time to be released from quarantine.