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SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

Young health worker shares Covid-19 experience after 68 days in ICU

A healthcare worker in his thirties who spent 68 days in intensive care after contracting Covid-19 has issued an appeal to the nation to take the disease seriously.

Jerick Martin was a “fit and healthy man” when he was admitted to intensive care where he spent most of his time in an induced coma on a ventilator.

Mr Martin has shared the details of his experience with the disease in order to encourage those who hear it to understand the virus “does not care that you are young, fit and healthy.”

I caught Covid-19 and within five days of experiencing my first symptoms I was admitted to hospital, where I spent 68 days in intensive care, most of that time on a ventilator, in an induced coma.

“This disease does not care that you are young, fit and healthy. It does not care that you have a family who love you and who are waiting for you to come home. Anyone can catch it, and anyone can become very sick,” Mr Martin said.

“I know from personal experience how dangerous this virus is. I was a fit and healthy man in my thirties, working and enjoying my life with my wife and my daughter,” he said.

“I caught Covid-19 and within five days of experiencing my first symptoms I was admitted to hospital, where I spent 68 days in intensive care, most of that time on a ventilator, in an induced coma.”

Organ failure

Mr Martin described his experience with the disease as a traumatic one for his and his family.

“I was told by my doctor that I would be in the induced coma for a few days, but I actually woke up two months later. The impact of that is very frightening and it will have long-lasting effects,” Mr Martin said.

My wife says this was a living hell for her. She thought I was going to die, and the hospital had to ring her twice to tell her that I might not live.

“Being in an induced coma on a ventilator means that you are unconscious and a machine has to breathe for you.

“I had multi-organ failure, and my family had to cope with me being unable to respond to them, unable to hear them, surrounded by machinery and tubes in a hospital bed.

“My wife says this was a living hell for her. She thought I was going to die, and the hospital had to ring her twice to tell her that I might not live.”

Mr Martin said though he was grateful to be alive, he was concerned about the long-term effects of the virus that he still has to contend with.

“Even now, my life and my health have changed. I lost three and a half stone in weight. I have diabetes, shortness of breath and hypertension. I did not have these conditions before.

“I am very grateful to be alive, and I would like people to realise the effect that Covid-19 can easily have on you,” he said.

“I eventually began to recover, thanks to the staff in Beaumont Hospital and the family and friends who prayed for me, and I was able to go home.

“Even now, my life and my health have changed. I lost three and a half stone in weight. I have diabetes, shortness of breath and hypertension.

“I did not have these conditions before. Now, I need an inhaler and I am short of breath going up or down the stairs.

“I don’t know what the longer term effects are going to be. I am asking now for everyone to be careful. Take this virus very seriously.”