Prince Charles Tests Positive for Coronavirus, Has 'Mild Symptoms' But in 'Good Health'
Prince Charles has tested positive for coronavirus, but is in “good health.”
The heir to the throne has continued working at home and his wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, does not have the virus, a statement issued to PEOPLE says. Sources close to him say Charles has not been in the hospital and that doctors are advising that his diagnosis is unlikely to escalate into a more serious case. A spokesman says that the royal is “in good spirits.”
“Both of them remain in good spirits. There is a sense of keeping calm and carrying on. The duchess is concerned for him but she is aware of his own good spirits and therefore is keeping a close eye on him and mindful of her own situation,” a palace source tells PEOPLE. “She is upbeat.”
A Clarence House spokesperson confirmed the diagnosis in a statement early Wednesday, saying, “The Prince of Wales has tested positive for Coronavirus. He has been displaying mild symptoms but otherwise remains in good health and has been working from home throughout the last few days as usual.”
“The Duchess of Cornwall has also been tested but does not have the virus. In accordance with Government and medical advice, the Prince and the Duchess are now self-isolating at home in Scotland,” the statement continued. “The tests were carried out by the NHS in Aberdeenshire where they met the criteria required for testing.”
The statement added, “It is not possible to ascertain from whom the Prince caught the virus owing to the high number of engagements he carried out in his public role during recent weeks.”
He started to feel symptoms late in the weekend and took the test on Monday and results were known on Tuesday. The palace will not comment on his symptoms. Medical advisers estimate that the earliest date he could have been infectious was March 13, according to the palace.
Charles, 71, last saw his mother Queen Elizabeth on March 12, Buckingham Palace says. “Her Majesty The Queen remains in good health. The Queen last saw The Prince of Wales briefly after the investiture on the morning of 12th March and is following all the appropriate advice with regard to her welfare,” a palace spokesman added.
Prince Philip, 98, was not with the Queen at Buckingham Palace when she last saw Charles, the palace confirmed. Philip traveled from the couple’s Sandringham estate to Windsor Castle last week, where he reunited with the Queen.
The couple are talking to their families. Charles has spoken to his sons Prince William and Prince Harry to share the news with them. He has also spoken to the Queen. (He was last with his sons in public on March 9 at the Commonwealth service.)
Charles and and Camilla, 72, are at Birkhall, their home on Queen Elizabeth‘s Balmoral estate in Scotland. The grand house, always a favorite of the prince, was given to him by his mother, Queen Elizabeth.
The prince is in self-isolation at Birkhall and Camilla is in self-isolation separately within their estate home. The couple were not isolating from one another and once he was diagnosed, she went into self-isolation.
There is a small number of staff at the house, and all of them are operating in isolation from the royal couple. The house is also cutoff from the local community.
Charles is working at home — talking to his charities, talking to the people at the Duchy of Cornwall estate to make sure that people are okay and are managing in the light of the pandemic, palace sources say.
“The symptoms are not stopping him doing work in the usual way,” says a royal source.
Prince Charles is the first member of the British Royal family to be diagnosed with coronavirus, though several others have spoken out about the pandemic.
Prince William shared a personal video message amid the coronavirus crisis last week, saying: “Whenever and wherever adversity strikes, the people of the U.K. have a unique ability to pull together. The way that local communities support those affected shows the very best of our values and human nature.”
There has been some questions in the U.K. over the lack of widespread testing. The couple fulfilled criteria for testing by the NHS in Scotland, the palace said.
Scotland’s Chief Medical officer added in a statement: “Dr Catherine Calderwood, Chief Medical Officer for Scotland, has confirmed that Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay, were tested for Covid-19 for clinical reasons. She is very pleased to confirm that both remain in good health.”
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