The Palace Confirms What We Suspected About Camilla's Health

Camilla Parker Bowles, Duchess of Cornwall, has been in the spotlight lately. On February 5, 2022, the Queen made the big announcement that Camilla would be known as Queen Consort when Prince Charles becomes King (per People).

The following Wednesday, on February 9, Prince Charles and Camilla attended an event at the British Museum and interacted with dozens of people (per CNN). People reported that this event was the couple first appearance together since the Queen's announcement.

A day later, Prince Charles announced that he had tested positive for COVID-19, marking the second time he was infected with the virus. According to the Daily Mail, Prince Charles discovered the result while taking a routine test before a public engagement. CNN reported that Prince Charles was self-isolating and would not be participating in a statue unveiling in Winchester he had been scheduled to attend.

Questions immediately arose about health of the Queen and others who had spent time with Prince Charles in the days before his positive test. According to the Daily Mail, the Queen met with her son two days earlier, and she continues to be closely monitored.

Camilla's positive COVID-19 test

On Monday, February 14, 2022, a spokesman for Clarence House confirmed that Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall had tested positive (per People). Like Prince Charles, she is now self-isolating.

Camilla is vaccinated and boosted, so in the days between her husband's positive test and her own, she was not required to self-isolate, in compliance with England's current COVID restrictions (per Daily Mail). Prince Charles is also triply vaccinated. According to Hello!, the couple confirmed their vaccination status in December and issued a statement encouraging people to follow their example: "People who are unvaccinated are at least 10 times more likely to be hospitalised or die than those who have had two vaccine doses." 

On February 10, Camilla had tested negative prior to attending her own public appearances, which included a visit to Thames Valley Partnership, Paddington Haven, and the community kitchen Nourish Hub.

Like much of the world, the Omicron variant is dominant in the U.K. According to CNBC, in a January 2022 study, the Omicron variant represented 99% of the U.K.'s sequenced cases. Scientific American reports that omicron is so contagious that one case can turn into six cases in four days. Despite Omicron's contagiousness and its abilities to evade immune defenses, vaccines and booster shots remain a powerful tool in avoiding serious illness.

Fans are worried for the queen

Of course, with Camilla Parker Bowles and Prince Charles' COVID-19 diagnoses, the public is concerned about the possibility that Queen Elizabeth could come down with the virus. According to ABC News, she is being closely monitored and is not showing any symptoms. Since she is 95 years old, contracting COVID-19 could be a difficult battle for her to fight. Thankfully, she is vaccinated.

Victoria Murphy, the royal contributor for ABC News, told the outlet, "With the queen, they're balancing the situation," adding, "She is head of state and there is a sense that the public does need and want to know, but at the same time, she's a very elderly lady who is entitled to a certain amount of medical privacy."

This is not the first time Charles and the queen had a run-in with COVID-19. When the virus was first peaking in March 2020, Charles produced a positive test (via People). At the time, fans were fearful for the queen, as there were no vaccines and we didn't know nearly as much as we know now about the virus. Thankfully, she didn't get sick, and Charles only experienced mild symptoms and recovered quickly.

The COVID-19 diagnosis comes after a big announcement for Camilla

The COVID-19 diagnosis followed shortly after the news broke that Queen Elizabeth would be giving Camilla Parker Bowles a new title when Prince Charles becomes king (via CBS News). The queen shared that she would like her daughter-in-law to be known as queen consort, stating, "And when, in the fullness of time, my son Charles becomes king, I know you will give him and his wife Camilla the same support that you have given me; and it is my sincere wish that, when that time comes, Camilla will be known as queen consort as she continues her own loyal service."

Of course, fans of the royal family were torn on the idea of Camilla being called queen (via PureWow). After Charles famously cheated on Princess Diana with Camilla, there have been ill feelings towards the future queen consort. Though Charles and Camilla met long before he began seeing Diana, the royal family was hopeful that he would take on a different bride, hence Diana coming into the picture. It seems his heart was always set on Camilla, and now she will join him when he becomes king as queen consort.