On December 25th, an employee of Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center entered the hospital's emergency room wearing an air-powered Christmas tree costume in an effort to boost the morale of patients being treated on Christmas Day. That employee is now suspected of inadvertently causing an outbreak that has infected 44 staff members and left one staff member dead.
According to a spokesperson, the hospital is investigating if the fan on the costume may have spread droplets through the emergency departments.
"Any exposure, if it occurred, would have been completely innocent, and quite accidental, as the individual had no COVID symptoms and only sought to lift the spirits of those around them during what is a very stressful time."
The hospital confirmed late Sunday evening that one employee has died.