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CoxHealth employee dies from COVID-19

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A CoxHealth employee has died from COVID-19, according to a statement issued yesterday by health care system President and CEO Steve Edwards.

Marie Brumbaugh, 40, worked as a medical assistant at one of CoxHealth's Branson-area clinics. Spokesperson Kaitlyn McConnell said the health care system is not releasing the location of the clinic.

"She served our patients with great kindness, compassion and honor, prioritizing the health and safety of others," Edwards said in the statement. "We deeply mourn the loss of our colleague and friend, and offer our love and support to her family and loved ones."

McConnell said Brumbaugh is the first CoxHealth employee to die from COVID-19. In the statement, Edwards said the health care system did not know "with certainty" how Brumbaugh contracted the disease.

"There is a possibility she may have contracted the virus while caring for a patient undergoing routine clinic care unrelated to COVID-19. The patient needed to be unmasked for a short time during the course of treatment, and tested positive for COVID-19 after the clinic visit," Edwards said in the statement. "It is also possible she acquired it in the community as the prevalence has been high in and around Taney County."

The Taney County Health Department's COVID-19 dashboard shows 768 confirmed cases and 19 deaths as of yesterday afternoon.

The CoxHealth Foundation has established a scholarship and support fund for Brumbaugh's daughter, according to the statement. McConnell said the foundation would help with funeral expenses through its employee crisis fund.

Separately, a GoFundMe crowdfunding campaign set up by her daughter, Jaedyn Cramer-Brumbaugh, is seeking $5,000 to cover funeral costs and other related expenses. The campaign raised $695 as of 12:06 p.m.

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