Rachel Maddow Reveals Partner Susan Mikula Is Battling COVID-19 in Emotional Return to MSNBC

"At one point, we really thought that there was a possibility that it might kill her," she said of her partner Susan Mikula's battle with the coronavirus

Rachel Maddow reveals her longtime partner Susan Mikula had a near-fatal battle with COVID-19.

Earlier this month, the MSNBC anchor, 47, announced that she would be "at home quarantining 'til it's safe for me to be back at work without putting anyone at risk" after a "close contact" of hers tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Maddow returned to her hosting gig on Thursday, broadcasting from home, revealing that Mikula, 62, contracted COVID-19.

Maddow said Mikula, her partner of more than 21 years whom she calls "the center of my universe," is recovering and getting better now but is still sick.

"Susan has been sick with COVID these past couple of weeks. And, at one point, we really thought that there was a possibility that it might kill her. And that's why I've been away. Susan tested positive two weeks ago, we separated from each other that day because I tested negative ... so she and I have both been alone since then."

"She had gotten sicker and sicker, while I tried to care for her while still staying physically apart from her," she added. "And the bottom line is that she's gonna be fine. She is recovering. She's still sick, but she's gonna be okay and we're not scared anymore like we were."

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

Maddow went on to encourage viewers to continue to social distance and follow public health guidelines to avoid contracting the coronavirus. She added that she "would have moved mountains for it to have been me who was sick these past couple of weeks instead of Susan ... but this thing does not give you that choice."

"Whatever you think of your own life and however much risk you are willing to take on for yourself," she said, "that's not how this works. What you need to know is that whoever is the most important person in your life, whoever you most love and most care for and most cherish in the world, that's the person who you may lose. Or who you may spend weeks up all night freaking out about and calling doctors all over the place ... and trying to figure out how to keep that person breathing and out of the hospital."

"Whatever you're doing, however you've calibrated risk in your life, don't get this thing. Do whatever you can to keep from getting it," added Maddow.

RELATED VIDEO: One of the First Americans with COVID Spent 64 Days in a Hospital with '1% Chance of Survival'

RELATED GALLERY: Celebrities Who Have Tested Positive for Coronavirus

On Twitter after the broadcast, Maddow tweeted her appreciation for fans showing support for her and Mikula.

"Thanks to everyone who’s said such kind things after I talked about Susan’s COVID experience tonight," she wrote. "Prayers are very welcome. If there’s one other thing we could ask, it’s to please find new ways to show support for health workers where you live. And slow the spread. Please."

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from the WHO and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

Related Articles