Atlanta Mayor Recounts Her ‘Startling’ Reaction To Testing Positive For COVID-19

speaks onstage during the 2018 Essence Festival presented by Coca-Cola at Ernest N. Morial Convention Center on July 7, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
NEW ORLEANS, LA - JULY 07: Mayor of Atlanta Keisha Lance Bottoms speaks onstage during the 2018 Essence Festival presented by Coca-Cola at Ernest N. Morial Convention Center on July 7, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana... NEW ORLEANS, LA - JULY 07: Mayor of Atlanta Keisha Lance Bottoms speaks onstage during the 2018 Essence Festival presented by Coca-Cola at Ernest N. Morial Convention Center on July 7, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for Essence) MORE LESS
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July 6, 2020 6:59 p.m.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced on Monday that she tested positive for COVID-19 despite experiencing no symptoms.

During an interview on MSNBC shortly after tweeting her COVID-19 diagnosis, Bottoms recalled how she reacted upon testing positive despite taking “serious precautions.”

After saying that she’s “processing all of this,” Bottoms said that she was prompted to get tested for the coronavirus due to how her husband has “been sleeping since Thursday,” which is highly unusual for him. Bottoms pointed out that she and her husband tested negative two weeks ago and that it was a “shock” to now test positive because what she has seen with him is “not out of the ordinary for seasonal allergies.”

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“It leaves me for a loss of words because I think it really speaks to how contagious this virus is, and we have taken all of the precautions that you can possibly take,” Bottoms said. “We wear masks, we’re very thoughtful about washing our hands. I have no idea when and where we were exposed.”

When asked how she and her husband are feeling, Bottoms reiterated the he’s been sleeping a lot and that she feels fine. Bottoms noted that she suffers from allergies and that “aside from just a mild cough and a headache,” there has been a lot going on in Atlanta that is “enough to give you a headache.”

Bottoms later outlined her plans in how she will continue leading her city, saying that she will work in her home office for the next two weeks and pray that the rest of her family is healthy.

Bottoms emphasized again that her COVID-19 diagnosis is “startling” for her “because we’ve been so very careful.”

“But certainly we are not immune, and, again, this is just a lesson to everyone that you have to take every single symptom seriously,” Bottoms said. “And as I see this growing list of symptoms, you can’t assume that it’s just seasonal allergies. You can’t assume a mild cough are seasonal allergies. We all need to be tested — and in my case, tested regularly because this is probably my second test within a month. I was tested right after the funeral for Rayshard Brooks, because I was in a large crowd, and then tested again and now I’ve tested positive.”

Bottoms went on to say that when it comes to COVID-19 testing in Atlanta, “the challenge is the results” due to a backlog. Bottoms then argued that the key to managing and containing COVID-19 is contact tracing.

“We have to do better if we are going to get to the other side of COVID-19. We keep making the same mistakes over and over again,” Bottoms said. “And this is why we keep getting the same results over and over again. This is why the numbers are going up so high.”

Watch Bottoms’ remarks below:

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