On Thursday, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador announced that 205 people have recovered from COVID-19 in the province, including Bill Woolridge.
Woolridge joined Premier Dwight Ball, Minister of Health John Haggie and Chief Medical Officer of Health Janice Fitzgerald Thursday in the COVID-19 provincial government’s daily update to tell his story about contracting the virus, healing it and the challenges he faced during these two difficult ones. week period.
The Woolridge Coronavirus story involves at least 176 other people affected by a funeral at the Caul’s funeral home in St. John’s in mid-March for his brother-in-law, Edward Tobin.
“He was buried in the funeral home of Caul on March 17, after a funeral celebration in the chapel of Caul. My first COVID-19 symptom occurred on the evening of March 19, “said Woolridge.
It started with a headache and a feeling of pressure on the forehead. Subject to sinus infections, Woolridge said the possibility of having COVID-19 had not crossed his mind.
Then he started to feel tired.
On March 21, two days after starting to feel sick, Woolridge said his family had received a call from a relative that someone who attended the funeral had tested positive for the virus.
“My wife and I immediately became isolated and it was only then that I wondered if I had contracted the coronavirus,” he said.
On March 22, her condition worsened due to low grade fever and chills. Woolridge called the province’s 811 health line and set up an appointment to be tested by public health. Within 24 hours of the test, the results returned. He had tested positive. His wife hadn’t.
Already isolated, the couple were invited to stay at home for the compulsory period of 14 days and to distance themselves as much as possible under the same roof.
“We practiced physical distance. Two meters from each other in the living room, in the games room, in the kitchen, the separate bathrooms, the separate bedrooms. We ate at different tables, ”he said.
“These measures seem to be working because my wife has never had a coronavirus. I suppose [it’s] proof that physical distance works. ”
But Woolridge continued to get worse. Headache, cough, chills, sweating, loss of appetite and fever over a six-day period that he said he was doing the best he could with Tylenol.
During his time in solitary confinement, Woolridge said he was not only worried about himself.
In fact, 25 other family members and two close friends – one of whom was hospitalized for five days – had tested positive for the virus following the funeral in March.
“It was a concern for sure. But we’re glad they’ve all recovered. They turned a corner on the virus and now they are all doing well, ”said Woolridge.
On the mend
Things started to turn gradually for Woolridge, who returned to his initial symptoms of mild fever and headache. Throughout the ordeal, he said, he never experienced any aches, pains or breathing problems, which are often symptoms of the virus.
Two weeks after noticing the symptoms for the first time, Woolridge said everything was gone.
On April 6, he and his wife were retested. This time, both tests came back negative.
“We are both fine. I feel good and I am certainly grateful to have managed to get through this period, “he said.
Now Woolridge wants to share the reality of the virus with others.
“The coronavirus is not a hoax. The coronavirus is very real. Coronavirus can make you very sick and even threaten your life. Please respect this virus, ”he said.
“I would like to express my sincere condolences to the families of the three people who died from complications from the coronavirus. It’s so sad and I’m so sorry. “
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