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Coronavirus: ‘I feel like I am now living my second life’ - Redbridge granddad returns home after three months battling virus

PUBLISHED: 07:00 08 July 2020 | UPDATED: 07:56 08 July 2020

Rohit Patel is finally back home with his four grandkids after three months at King George Hospital battling coronavirus. Picture: Chandni Patel

Rohit Patel is finally back home with his four grandkids after three months at King George Hospital battling coronavirus. Picture: Chandni Patel

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A grandfather says he is now living his second life after returning home following a gruelling three months being treated for Covid-19 at King George Hospital.

Rohit Patel, 61, of Falmouth Gardens, Redbridge, was admitted to the hospital in Goodmayes on April 1 and within days he had to be sedated and put on a ventilator.

He remained in an induced coma for a month, during which time his family was unable to see him or speak to him.

He was in ICU for 52 days and Rohit said he has no memory whatsoever from that period.

Rohit was finally sent home on July 1 and he said: “I feel like I am now living my second life, it’s wonderful to be home.”

Rohit Patel spent a record amount of time on a ventilator at King George Hospital battling Covid-19. Picture: Chandni PatelRohit Patel spent a record amount of time on a ventilator at King George Hospital battling Covid-19. Picture: Chandni Patel

His daughter Chandni, 36, said his full recovery process will be slow but they are very relieved to have him back home.

She said: “It was really emotional for us and overwhelming for him when we got to speak again.

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“It’s been upsetting seeing my formerly healthy dad having to learn to eat again, however, he’s worked really hard and it just shows how strong he is.”

Rohit is a checkout clerk at Asda and fell ill in March before the government issued lockdown. Picture: Chandni PatelRohit is a checkout clerk at Asda and fell ill in March before the government issued lockdown. Picture: Chandni Patel

She said she was particularly shocked to see how much weight he lost and said “his legs are the size of my arms”. But she added that every day he is slowly improving.

Chandni’s daughter Maya didn’t like to talk to her granddad over Facetime but once he came home she jumped up and hugged him and said: “Dada’s home, Dada’s home!”

She said being around all four of his grandchildren really lifts his spirits.

Rohit, an Asda checkout clerk who works alongside his wife, Harshila, first fell ill on March 23 after starting his 6am shift.

Rohit and his wife Harshila. Picture: Patel FamilyRohit and his wife Harshila. Picture: Patel Family

He had a stomach ache and thought it had to do with his high blood pressure and didn’t suspect it was coronavirus.

A week later he was admitted to King George Hospital and the following day he was put on a ventilator after his oxygen levels dropped dangerously low.

That was the beginning of months of anguish for him and his family as doctors struggled to keep him alive while he caught infections which attacked his organs.

Now that he’s home he doesn’t need extra oxygen and has physiotherapists visiting him five days a week.


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