In a heartfelt Twitter message on Thanksgiving, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams disclosed that his wife, Lacey, and his mother were both recently hospitalized — and thanked everyone who “kept a hospital bed open” for his loved ones by following coronavirus precautions.
“My wife was just in the hospital due to cancer treatment complications. My mom was admitted last night with a hip fracture & possible stroke. Thanks to all who kept a hospital bed open for my loved ones by following #COVID19 precautions and getting your #flu shot. It matters,” Adams wrote.
In another post, Adams also wished Americans a “safe, healthy, and blessed #Thanksgiving.”
“This #holidayseason let us show our appreciation for those we love and our local communities by remembering and upholding our #COVID safety measures,” another tweet read.
The 46-year-old appointee of President Trump also reminded his followers to wear a mask, wash their hands frequently and practice social distancing during holiday celebrations.
In a final tweet Thursday, he thanked health care workers, public health service officers, essential workers and uniformed service members, saying they work “day and night trying to slow the spread of COVID and keeping our country safe.”
Adams, a native of Maryland, has been one of the most frequently seen government officials explaining to the public the risks of coronavirus and communicating the federal government’s response.
The nation’s 20th surgeon general is a vice admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, a post he was appointed to 2017 by Trump after serving as Indiana’s state health commissioner. In 2014, he was appointed by then-Indiana Gov. Mike Pence to serve as the state’s health commissioner.
The Department of Health and Human Services website describes the surgeon general’s job as providing Americans “with the best scientific information available on how to improve their health and reduce their risk of illness and injury.”