Rep. Dafna Michaelson Jenet, a Commerce City Democrat, doesn't have COVID-19 after all.
A statement from House Democrats attributed the positive test result, announced on March 17, to an error by her doctor in reading the results. Michaelson Jenet has a different coronavirus, and one that does not require her to be isolated from family. She, however, has elected to remain in self-quarantine until her symptoms subside, according to the statement.
Last Thursday, Michaelson Jenet's doctor, who is on the faculty of the CU Anschutz Medical Campus, misinterpreted the results of a viral screening panel as being positive for the coronavirus causing COVID-19, the statement said.
A second reading of the results showed she had tested positive for coronavirus NL63. "Individuals infected with this virus are advised to follow the standard advice offered to anyone with an acute respiratory infection but their immediate contacts do not need to be quarantined."
“While I am still feeling very sick from this other coronavirus, I am relieved to know that I haven’t inadvertently exposed anyone at the Capitol or in my community to COVID-19,” she said.
“When I first received the results indicating a positive test for COVID-19, I felt it was important to notify people who may have been exposed; so I feel it is important to share this update as well, to ease the concerns of people I had been in close contact with. We know this disease is spreading rapidly, and one rare testing mishap should not change the seriousness with which we all must confront this public health emergency. Everyone has to follow the advice of public health officials and social distance, stay at home, wash your hands and follow best practices for stopping the spread of the virus.”
The statement said the test itself is reliable, "but human error can lead to misinterpretations of results/"
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment urges medical professionals "to educate themselves about the test and to be meticulous when interpreting and communicating results to patients."