YOUNGER PEOPLE INFECTED- For the past several weeks, the news about Covid infections on the rise has become routine as many parts of the country and especially the deep south have seen considerable increases in hospitalizations. And doctors have noted the ages of patients are getting younger and younger than the covid surges from a year ago. They say it’s because of the newer, more infectious Delta variant of the disease. While the more elderly segments of the population are still at risk, younger people are showing up in emergency rooms unable to breathe due to Covid.
40-year old Erik Nutt of Nacogdoches, Texas is one of those people. A former U.S. Coast Guard rescue swimmer, Erik was in good physical condition and kept his social distance working at home in his job as a marketing director for a wholesale crawfish company. But earlier this month, he started having problems.
"I was running 103.4 fever and it just kept going back and forth, going through the fever segments and I started having shortness of breath," Nutt explained. "So when I got admitted (in the hospital) my oxygen level was down to 67%."
Just two days before he fell ill, Erik received his first dose of the Moderna vaccine. He says he was waiting for FDA approval before getting the shot. Although he got Covid, he and his doctor credit the vaccine for keeping him from getting worse.
"I think the Moderna shot had something to do with it like the doctor said because it kept the inflammation out of my lungs," Nutt said. "Because if I wouldn't have had the vaccine, they said I could have done more serious in my oxygen levels."
Erik says he underwent steroid and breathing treatments and was placed on a ventilator for 90 hours before his oxygen levels returned to normal. He was hospitalized for about 5 days and has since been discharged, currently under quarantine at his East Texas home. During his hospital stay, Erik said he could hear Code Blue calls meaning other Covid patients on the floor were going into cardiac arrest. After his experience he offers these words to those who’ve yet to get vaccinated.
"If you really want to stay close to your loved ones I would recommend you take the vaccine, you have an 80% chance of fighting the infection versus not doing the vaccine and that's scientifical fact" Nutt said.
If you’d like to know where you can get vaccinated, we’ll have locations posted on our website. Go to redriverradio.org and click on the links.