Coronavirus victim speaks out about recovering from the deadly virus

A student in Wuhan who contracted coronavirus has spoken out about what it is like to have the deadly virus. 

The 21-year-old student, who was called Tiger Ye in the Bloomberg interview, but had his real identity kept a secret, said his symptoms were so severe he thought he would die in quarantine. 

Ye told Bloomberg he first noticed symptoms on January 21 when he felt too weak to finish dinner. He went to Wuhan's Tongji Hospital where he said he waited in a room with other people with fevers. 

 "I was scared," he told Bloomberg. 

"Countless cases were piling up on the desks, and every single doctor was wearing protective clothes, something I’d never seen before."

Ye was told to go home and quarantine himself and return if his symptoms got worse. 

A lack of testing kits for the virus meant patients were going undiagnosed. 

Ye was repeatedly told his symptoms weren't severe enough to warrant being tested for the virus, despite his condition having infected his lungs. 

It took two weeks and multiple hospital visits for Ye to be diagnosed with coronavirus, now called Covid-19. 

He told Bloomberg the first four days of the illness were brutal. 

"I suffered from a high fever and pains that tortured every part of my body.

"I was coughing like I was going to die. I thought I was knocking on hell’s door."

On January 29 he was finally tested for the virus, given a course of the antiviral drug Aluvia and sent back to quarantine. 

On February 7 Ye was told he was clear of the virus. 

He told Bloomberg he was thankful he survived and said some of the doctors who treated him suspected they had contracted coronavirus but carried on treating patients. 

The coronavirus outbreak originated in the city of Wuhan in China's Hubei province late last year. 

It's thought the disease spread from animals to humans in a live food market. 

Since the virus broke out it has spread to more than 25 countries, but just two people outside of China have died from it. One man died in Hong Kong and another in the Philippines. 

The virus causes fever, coughing, respiratory distress and pneumonia. In severe cases, it can lead to organ failure and death.

Cases of virus still rising

There have been over 64,000 cases of infection by the virus globally with the first found in Africa on Saturday. 

So far there have been over 1300 deaths, with the majority of cases and deaths in the Hubei region where it first broke. 

New Zealanders evacuated from Wuhan are currently in quarantine north of Auckland, but there have been no confirmed cases here. 

The Ministry of Health says anyone who has travelled to Hubei province this year should isolate themselves, join the coronavirus register and a healthline has been set up to help. 

You can call the helpline on 0800 358 5453.


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