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'Please pay attention': Chilliwack woman shares experience with COVID-19
VANCOUVER -- Erin Calver struggles to stop her cough.
At times, she struggles to breathe.
The 38-year-old Chilliwack woman is in a Calgary-area hospital after being infected with COVID-19.
“The big thing is just the shortness of breath and wheezing. Keeping my oxygen numbers up,” she told CTV News in a video interview from her hospital bed.
She began showing flu-like symptoms about a week ago while in Alberta and went to hospital.
“I came on Sunday morning and they did not believe I had COVID. I did not have fever or anything but they swabbed me just in case,” she said.
She self-quarantined and a couple days later learned that she had tested positive. By then Calver, who has an underlying heart condition, was having difficulty breathing and was rushed to hospital.
Masked herself, and surrounded by medical staff wearing personal protective equipment, she realized the seriousness of what she faced.
An emotional Calver says a doctor then told her “I think you’re going to be okay but we might have to put a tube down your throat if your oxygen plummets more in which case you would wake up in the ICU.”
Calver considers herself lucky to have a “moderate” form of the virus. She doesn’t know where she picked it up, has not travelled and was following the protocols from health officials. She has been in Alberta since early March.
“I haven’t deteriorated which is what I was doing over the last few days so as long as I stay the same or improve I’m happy with that,” says Calver who is grateful to the medical staff putting themselves at risk to care for patients like her.
What she is grappling with is that she may have unknowingly infected others.
“I can handle me having an issue but I cannot handle the fact that I perhaps was responsible for giving it to someone else or making them a carrier and that weighs heavily on me.”
She is speaking publically with the hope that others will understand how serious the pandemic is.
“I just beg that people please pay attention to what the government is asking you to do," she said. "Because even though you may catch this and not have any symptoms, the next person won’t necessarily be so lucky.”