Thirteen (13) sailors aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt who supposedly recovered from the coronavirus have tested positive for COVID-19 again, after initially receiving negative test results.
Notably, these 13 sailors were among the more than 1,100 crew members of the USS Theodore Roosevelt who tested positive for coronavirus a few weeks ago.
According to Stars & Stripes, the Navy spokesman Cmdr. Myers Vasquez said in a statement, The sailors had “met rigorous recovery criteria” that “exceeds all [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] guidelines. The sailors had developed flu-like symptoms this week and went to be medically evaluated, they were immediately removed from the ship and placed in quarantine.
The sailors with new positive tests are receiving medical support on Naval Base Guam.
Also, 18 other sailors who came in contact with them were also removed, re-tested, and quarantined as they wait for their results, according to a U.S. defense official.
Stars & Stripes reported on Thursday that five sailors had tested positive after re-boarding the ship. Within 3 days the cases are more than double.
The sailors had adhered to strict social distancing protocols put in place by the Navy while they were on the ship, the Navy spokesman Cmdr. Myers Vasquez said.
Sailors who test positive must isolate for at least 14 days, have no symptoms for at least three days, and then are required to have two consecutive negative tests in a greater than 48-hour period before they are allowed to return to the ship, Vasquez said.
It is not yet clear that whether there was an error in the earlier test results, or these cases are relapses.
One U.S. official told the Associated Press that commanders on the ship believe the issue could be related to the accuracy of testing, which has repeatedly come under question.
Notably, The Navy has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the military at 2,191 as of May 14, according to the Pentagon.
Recently, the USS Roosevelt was at the center of a controversy over the firing of the warship’s skipper, Capt. Brett Crozier, who complained that the Navy was not adequately responding to the outbreak aboard the ship.