‘Don’t tell me I killed my mom’: Nursing home worker fears she unknowingly passed COVID-19 to mother

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WINDSOR, Conn. (WTNH) — A Connecticut nursing home worker says she believes she caught coronavirus at work and unknowingly passed it along to her mother who later died of the virus.

Certified Nursing Assistant Francene Bailey said her mother, Hazel, died April 19 of the highly-contagious coronavirus.

Sister station WTNH first spoke with Bailey earlier this month after she herself had tested positive for the virus.

Bailey works at Kimberly Hall North in Windsor – a nursing home with one of the highest numbers of coronavirus deaths in the state. Her union, SEIU 1199, said her story highlights the danger its members face every day, not only for themselves, but their loved ones.

Bailey said before she got her diagnosis, she had problems breathing and fell down a set of stairs at home. She said her mother picked her up and cradled her in her arms. Bailey believes that’s how Hazel became infected.

RELATED: State releases data for coronavirus cases, deaths in CT nursing homes

Bailey said she is tormented by guilt even though she didn’t realize she was exposing her mother to the disease.

I said no, I said ‘don’t tell me I killed my mom’ … I brought the virus home because I didn’t know I was sick.

– Francene Bailey / Nursing Home CNA

Richard Feifer, Chief Medical Officer for Genesis HealthCare, the company which runs Kimberly Hall North, spoke last week on the high number of deaths at the nursing home, saying the company follows strict cleanliness standards and works hard to protect their staff. The company did not respond to a request for comment on Francene’s statements Wednesday.

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