Republican Tennessee lawmaker says he has COVID-19

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee state lawmaker says he has tested positive for COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus.

Republican state Rep. Kent Calfee said on Facebook on Friday that both he and his wife have tested positive. The 71-year-old Kingston lawmaker said his wife is receiving treatment and he is self-isolating, though he is not experiencing symptoms.

Calfee said in a statement that he has told legislative administration in Nashville, "so they can take any additional precautions to maintain a safe working environment for all within the Cordell Hull Building,” where the Tennessee General Assembly meets.

The Tennessean reported that Calfee attended two days of Joint Government Operations Committee meetings last week. Just a few lawmakers on the 24-member committee wore masks, the newspaper reported.

Tennessee has reported more than 61,000 cases and at least 738 deaths from the virus.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms that clear up within weeks. But for others, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, the virus can cause severe symptoms and be fatal.

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