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COVID-19 Survivor Pleads, Get Your Jab. Help Save Lives

I am pleading for everyone to be vaccinated. I have been vaccinated and my second dose is now due, this could at least give you some sense of protection so that your condition doesn’t worsen like what is happening in other countries of the world where people are dying,”
18 Jun 2021 12:30
COVID-19 Survivor Pleads, Get Your Jab. Help Save Lives
COVID-19 vaccination drive at Suva Sangam College on June 17, 2021. Photo: Leon Lord

Get vaccinated so that you are safe if you contract the virus.

This was the impassioned plea made by a recovered COVID-19 patient who tested positive of the virus during the second wave of the outbreak since April this year.

To protect the identity of the survivor and being victimised on social media, the Fiji Sun will call the brave frontliner, Patient ‘X’.

Patient X, who is a member of the disciplined forces, has had one jab of the AstraZeneca vaccine. His second jab is due this month.

“I am pleading for everyone to be vaccinated. I have been vaccinated and my second dose is now due, this could at least give you some sense of protection so that your condition doesn’t worsen like what is happening in other countries of the world where people are dying,” he said.

While a great majority of his colleagues were asymptomatic, patient X said trying to remain resilient in the face of criticism was a challenge.

“In that period, a big challenge was trying to stay strong because there was so much talk and criticism that was just made about us,” he said.

“This happened when we tried to deal with our COVID positive status, thinking of our families and the work that we do. We tried so hard to focus on ourselves, our work, and our families and on just getting better.”

 

Testing positive

The recovered patient X said the risk of working in his organisation was high because of the confined space and the nature of their work they carried out daily.

“We were working and while we had temperature checks every morning and when entering the work premises, all our temperature remained normal,” he said.

“It was not until last month when one of my colleagues, who went to a fever clinic to be screened, was swabbed and later tested positive for the virus. So, we became the primary contacts of my colleague who had tested positive.”

Upon testing positive, he said the only thing that came to mind was their families and the fear of transmitting the virus to other colleagues they encountered while working.

“We were tested, the first group tested positive and then we were part of the second group, and we became positive too,” he said.

“For us it was mild symptoms like dry cough and running nose for just the first three days since testing positive.

“We were isolated within our organisation and those that went home remained at home and we did not move out, ever.”

He had experienced symptoms on the first three days after testing positive but was still able to do some work while in isolated.

“None of my colleagues has had a serious condition and none has required an oxygen machine or ventilator,” he said.

“Just a few of us had to be taken into a quarantine facility because of coughs and other symptoms that they still had, so the doctors’ advice was to take them in for observation.

“Our condition was not really that serious; just cough, and body aches and we were just told to rest.”

He said they had been tested negative and were completing another 14 days of isolation until they would be re-tested next week.

He is urging Fijians to be obedient – stay home, follow the directives by the Ministry of Health, mask up and avoid making unnecessary movements.

 

Health experts clear the air

on vaccine

Former Permanent Secretary for Health and Senior Epidemiologist at the Pacific Community (SPC), Dr Salanieta Saketa, says no vaccine ever created has had a 100 per cent efficacy, including the COVID-19 vaccines.

However, she said the vaccine would activate your body soldiers to ensure your condition does not become severe.

Dr Saketa was speaking at a Fiji National University panel discussion ‘Explain the Science’ yesterday.

“So that would mean that you will still contract any disease or virus at any time even though you have been vaccinated. It prevents you from being admitted to the Intensive Care Unit or depending on ventilators to breathe,” she said.

 

Dr Jemesa Tudravu

Chief medical advisor Dr Jemesa Tudravu said there was no shortcut taken in the development of the COVID-19 vaccines currently administered to Fijians.

Speaking during the FNU panel discussion yesterday he said the vaccine went through numerous phases of clinical trials and was proven to help fight against COVID-19.

“Yes, the vaccine was developed at a really fast rate because we now have the people and the money that could quicken the production of these vaccines,” Dr Tudravu said.

“Something that always delayed the production of vaccines before was trying to look for the right people, resources and the funds to be used to develop vaccines.”

He also said more than 10 vaccines were approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to be used in the battle against COVID-19.

“The process taken to develop all other vaccines was the same one made in the creation of this one,” he said.

Feedback:  inoke.rabonu@fijisun.com.fj

 

 



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