Hotelier left in Covid coma issues warning to sceptics: 'If it wants to bring you to your knees, it will'
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Tushar Das, 51, spent 84 days at Blackpool Victoria Hospital after catching the potentially deadly virus in October last year.
He said: “I never thought it would happen to me. I thought it would take me out for a few days or a week. But it can affect anybody, no matter how healthy you are.
“I wouldn’t wish what happened to me on my worst enemy. It was the worst 84 days of my life.”
Tushar, a self-employed hotelier, tested positive for coronavirus on October 18, a few days after being tested.
“I have Covid symptoms, a loss of taste and small, and I was exhausted. I was sleeping 18 hours a day for three days,” he said.
On October 21 he began to experience breathing problems, and an ambulance was called and he was taken to A&E.
From there he was taken to the ICU, where he was placed in an induced coma while doctors battled to save his life.
He said: “All I remember is waking up in intensive care. I didn’t know the full extent of what actually happened for a while.
“I’m a Type 2 diabetic, which is one of the risk groups for Covid-19, but I didn’t know I was that vulnerable. I must have had a weak immune system, because it brought me to my knees, quite literally.
“The virus doesn’t discriminate. If it wants to ravage your body from head to toe, it will quite happily.”
Luckily, Tushar was able to make a good recovery with the help of his doctors, whom he has praised for their ‘world class’ treatment.
He returned home last month with the help of the hospital’s Home First pathway, which allows patients to be assisted by NHS staff in the comfort of their own homes two days a week.
He said: “I was very happy, the care was absolutely world class. Everyone from the admin team to the cleaning staff and of course the clinical staff, you couldn’t fault it. It was everything I wanted, absolutely amazing care.
“It is a worrying time being discharged, especially after 84 days in hospital. The Home First team met me on discharge at home and were here for about two hours on the day, they made sure that everything was okay and that I understood all the factors of being at home and being discharged.
“Everyone that attended to me was very professional, very caring and empathetic, so it was really good to have that security twice a day. It is good to have them here to make sure that everything was okay for me.”
However, he is still fighting through the lingering effects of his illness.
“I’ve been told my recovery will take about a year because I’ve lost so much,” he said.
“I still get very short of breath just doing simple tasks like changing or showering. But I’m walking every day,doing exercise every day. I try to do 1,000 steps a day, and I have to use a ventilator at night to expand my lungs because they are so weak.
“It makes me really angry when you get these false news stories that Covid doesn’t exist and it is just a scam. They can come and see me. I was there for 84 days, on a ventilator, I was put in an induced coma for three weeks, I was attached to a kidney dialysis machine.
“What more proof do they need that this is an absolute threat to everybody? It doesn’t matter how healthy you think you are, if it wants to bring you to your knees it will do, it doesn’t discriminate at all.”
Joanne Bunce, Home First boss at the Vic, said: “The home first service is fabulous. It offers the patient everything they need to remain safely at home following their hospital admission.”
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