ER nurse waiting for COVID-19 test results after showing symptoms, pleads for help from community to stop spread

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An Oklahoma City ER nurse is now in quarantine after showing symptoms related to COVID-19.

“Everyone in healthcare may seem like tough as nails and say, ‘Oh, we signed up for this,’ but no this is not,” Nikki Larson said.

Nikki Larson went from the front lines to the COVID-19 testing line.

“It hurts just like my patients told me it did,” Larson said.

The metro ER nurse is now on the other end of the pandemic, still waiting for her results.

“Cops were everywhere and everyone was in protective equipment,” Larson said.

The 38-year-old mother of four is in quarantine as she battles fever, cough and body aches. She’s still unable to see her children or care for her patients.

“Listen to the words coming out of my freaking mouth,” Larson said. “You do not know who will be tasked with keeping your family member because ER nurses and doctors are all getting sick and having to stay home!”

Oklahoma hospitals are overwhelmed, running low on manpower and in dire need of PPE.

On Wednesday, the state ensured reinforcements are here.

“As we speak, we have multi-million dollar orders to get, for instance, these masks that will be arriving today and in the next three to four days,” Secretary of Health Jerome Loughridge said.

Loughridge and Gov. Kevin Stitt announced there are also other options on the table.

“We are determining what it will look like to have field hospitals here in the metro,” Loughridge said.

Meanwhile, Nikki is pleading we don’t let it get to that point.

“Don’t become a patient if you don’t have to be one,” Larson said. “Stay home.”

Larson said she called NP 2 Go first for a consultation when she began to show symptoms. Then, she was set up with the Oklahoma State Department of Health to be tested at the OKC State Fairgrounds.

While Stitt says he will be dropping the restrictions for testing, he still encourages Oklahomans to call their healthcare provider first and not show up at the emergency room.

Stitt also said he hopes to have 13 mobile testing sites set up across the state by the end of this week.

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