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South Florida man in hospital isolation for a week with symptoms before finally being tested

Hospital spokesperson said doctors are ‘diligently following the CDC’s protocols regarding COVID-19 cases’

A sign outside Mercy Hospital in Miami.
A sign outside Mercy Hospital in Miami. (WPLG)

MIAMI – A South Florida man is holed up in a hospital room, anxious to find out if he’s got coronavirus.

That man, 42-year-old Pedro Jimenez, has had a fever, a sore throat and body aches for over a week.

That's how long he's been in isolation at Mercy Hospital, and he's still waiting to find out if he's contracted COVID-19.

"I want to get an answer, I want to know what’s going on," Jimenez said. "It’s going to be 8 days."

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Speaking to Local 10 News from his hospital bed, Jimenez says he was visiting his children in South Carolina and arrived back in Miami with flu like symptoms.

"I came straight from the airport to the hospital because I was feeling really, really bad," he explained. "My pain, my fever, my breath, I thought it was very bad."

The father of two says he waited nearly a week before hospital staff finally tested him for COVID-19 over the weekend.

"I asked them if you guys going to do the test for the coronavirus and they said they don’t have kits available," Jimenez said. He is still waiting on the results.

"Officials from the hospital came to see me," he said. "They apologized and they promised me as soon as they get my results, they’re going to let me know."

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A Mercy Hospital spokesperson declined to explain why Jimenez had to wait so long, instead sending Local 10 News' Christian De La Rosa a statement, which read, in part:

"The health and well being of our community is and always will be Mercy Hospital’s top priority. We are diligently following the CDC’s protocols regarding COVID-19 cases, which includes isolating individuals with symptoms of lower respiratory illness to ensure the safety of our patients, staff and visitors.”

Jimenez said doctors told him last week he had pneumonia, and his symptoms worsened.

When asked if the hospital is lacking coronavirus testing kits, the spokesperson told De La Rosa she could not answer that.


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