Amy Klobuchar's husband John Bessler tests positive for coronavirus

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Monday, March 23, 2020
What to know about Amy Klobuchar
In 2006, Amy Klobuchar became the first woman to represent Minnesota in the U.S. Senate.

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar announced Monday that her husband, John Bessler, has tested positive for the coronavirus.

The former Democratic presidential candidate said in a statement that Bessler began feeling sick when she was in Minnesota and he was in Washington, D.C., and that he immediately quarantined himself. She said he sought a test and chest X-ray after he began coughing up blood, and was checked into a Virginia hospital with "very low oxygen levels, which really haven't improved."

She said he now has pneumonia and is on oxygen but not a ventilator. Klobuchar said her doctor had advised her not to get a test.

"One of the hardest things about this disease is he's in the hospital today, he's been in there for a few days, and I can't even be by his side," Klobuchar said during a teleconference to discuss legislation Monday.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia.

Klobuchar said it took five days for Bessler to be tested, noting that such delays are a problem facing many.

"While my husband is sick and in the hospital because of his oxygen level and his pneumonia, there are so many other people who are in worse shape," Klobuchar said.

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She said everyone on the call will soon have a friend or loved one with the virus.

"This is going to happen to everyone and this is why we have to take incredibly fast and immediate action on hospitals."