Coronavirus | 99-year-old Bengalurean conquers COVID-19 in 9 days

Marceline Saldanha recovered in 9 days

A spirited 99-year-old woman returned home on Friday after recovering from COVID-19 in a record nine days in Bengaluru. She is the oldest person to recover from the disease in Karnataka so far.

Marceline Saldanha walked out of the Emergency and Trauma Care Centre at Victoria Hospital on Friday along with her 29-year-old grandson Vijay Saldanha.

Ms. Saldanha, who has a history of hypertension, was admitted along with her 70-year-old son, 66-year-old daughter-in-law, and the grandson. While she was asymptomatic, the other three had fever, cough, sore throat, and fatigue.

Recalling that it was her 99th birthday on June 18 when she entered the hospital, Ms. Saldanha said: “When my son told me that we had to get admitted to a government hospital, I was very reluctant. I had been to a government hospital 40 years ago and had not liked the ambience and patient care there. But now as I walk out of another government hospital, my notion... has changed.”

Lauding the team at the trauma care centre (TCC) , especially the nursing staff, for taking good care of her, Ms. Saldanha said she was constantly monitored by the staff.

“I am happy that I am free from the infection. People should not panic... over the infection. It is important to be confident and follow doctors’ advice, take precautions, and take medications regularly,” she said.

Attributing his grandmother’s recovery to the dedicated team of doctors, nurses, and other staff at the trauma care centre, Mr. Vijay Saldanha said she always had a positive attitude. “She has been active all through her hospital stay. My nephew and niece used to keep her engaged by talking to her on the phone.”

Her son, who is still in the hospital with his wife, said although she is choosy about food, she was happy with the quality of food provided in the hospital. “We are thankful to the entire team, especially the TCC nodal officer Asima Banu, for ensuring that every need of patients is taken care of,” he said.

Dr. Banu said: “We have had patients of all ages in the TCC, from a four-day-old baby to a 99-year-old senior citizen. It is an overwhelming feeling to see the senior-most patient walk out infection-free. Her recovery has boosted the morale of other patients in the ward.”

K.V. Trilok Chandra, who heads the State’s Critical Care Support Unit, said that being asymptomatic and reporting early to the hospital had worked in favour of the patient.

“She is the oldest patient to have recovered in the State. Although she had hypertension, she did not develop any other complications. Of the 3,500 high-risk cases, including senior citizens, that we have monitored so far, nearly 1,300 have already been discharged,” he said.

Ms. Saldanha told The Hindu that she was a little perplexed how the family got the infection. “None of us had stepped out of the house. I learnt about the disease on TV and also became aware of the precautions to be taken. We were following all precautions and despite that when my daughter-in-law and son had fever and irritation in the throat, all of us got tested. And, except my granddaughter, all of us tested positive and got admitted to the TCC on June 18,” she said.

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Printable version | Jul 10, 2020 12:31:37 PM |

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