Comedian and talk show star Ellen DeGeneres made the shocking announcement Thursday that she has been diagnosed with COVID-19.
According to The Hill, the star of The Ellen Degeneres Show said she’s tested positive for the coronavirus, but that she is “feeling fine” and plans to return to work at the start of the new year.
“I tested positive”
The news was first revealed by DeGeneres on her social media accounts.
“I want to let you all know that I tested positive for COVID-19,” the talk show host wrote in a statement. “Fortunately, I’m feeling fine right now.
“Anyone who has been in close contact with me has been notified, and I am following all proper CDC guidelines,” she added. “I’ll see you all again after the holidays. Please stay healthy and safe.”
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) December 10, 2020
DeGeneres joins some 15.8 million Americans who have been diagnosed with the novel coronavirus disease since the start of this year, according to a tracker from The New York Times. More than 292,000 in the U.S. have died from the disease.
A look ahead
According to The Hill, DeGeneres took her daily show virtual at the start of the pandemic in March, alongside dozens of other television hosts, as cases of COVID-19 continued to rise in the U.S.
In September, DeGeneres returned to the studio to start filming the 18th season of her self-named program. According to The Daily Wire, she began to allow as many as 40 people to sit in her studio audience in October.
Now, however, a spokesperson has confirmed that all production on DeGeneres’ program has been paused until at least early January 2021, reports said.
For DeGeneres, it may not be smooth sailing even when she does come back on-air, however. A report released by BuzzFeed News this week claimed The Ellen DeGeneres show has taken a hit in the ratings amid allegations that the host harbored a “toxic workplace.”
“This feels like our make-it-or-break-it moment,” one employee of the show reportedly told BuzzFeed. “This will be our biggest report card. If we pick up sponsors by the new year, then we’re cooking, we’ll be fine, and we’ll sell kindness in a bottle. But if we fail that report card, who knows.”