While Alfie was lying helpless in his hospital bed, he asked, "Mummy, am I going to die?"
Lauren Fulbrook, a mother from Worcestershire, took to Facebook begging people to stay at home after her ‘perfectly healthy’ five-year-old boy was hospitalized with coronavirus. She explained the symptoms shown by Alfie, despite him not having any health conditions. Lauren warned the parents that even young children can be affected by the COVID-19, despite many talks on ‘invincibility’ they can fall severely ill. Alfie’s symptoms to the virus were: temperature of more than 42C, vomiting and hallucinations. While lying on his hospital bed, Lauren felt helpless when he asked her, ‘Mummy, am I going to die?’, she feared for his life, according to Metro.
The 30-year-old mother’s post became viral after it was shared more than 51,000 times. She wanted to raise awareness to the rest of the world through her words and she posted: Coronavirus is NOT a joke. Please stop brushing it under the carpet and putting not only your own lives at risk but everyone else’s just because you want to go to the pub, or to a restaurant or think you need 7 packs of 24 toilet rolls. As a Covid-19 positive household, I’ve seen the effects it has. I’ve had to watch my 5-year-old son go from having all the energy in the world to not moving, not eating, hardly drinking or urinating. I watched him hallucinating and crying from his headache, being taken to hospital by ambulance to be put in isolation pods and be swabbed for the virus and confirmed positive.
Alfie first started showing symptoms of the virus on 16th March. The mother-of-two concluded her post by pleading to the viewers, who are still neglecting the stay at home advised by the government. So please, just stay in for a little while. So what if you can’t do all your normal things, the sooner everybody does social distancing, the sooner it will be over. I am not posting this for attention or sympathy, as I could have done that the day he got sick, I just want people to stay safe. Please think of your health and others. The effect of the coronavirus outbreak was generally mild on children but there is still a lot of research pending to be drawing a concrete conclusion.
Lauren explained how her son’s condition worsened after attending a swimming lesson last week. He started off sounding husky last Monday and I put it down to swallowing too much chlorine from his swimming lesson that day. Then he got a bark-like cough and it worsened throughout Tuesday, then his temperature suddenly kicked in Tuesday night and it shot straight to 38.4 so I had to keep him off school. Alfie kept saying he was ok and felt good – which he normally does. But come Thursday his temperature had hit 42.3 and I couldn’t get it down. He wasn’t eating, hardly drinking and said he couldn’t move. So I rang 111 and they sent an ambulance out in the morning, but they said that the hospital was so busy they couldn’t take him in. They got his temperature down and said if it went back up or he got worse to ring 999.
Alfie was taken to the Worcester hospital, which Lauren referred to as ‘ghost town’ with all the staff fully equipped with protective gear and masks. Upon arrival, they were also given masks and were quickly shifted to the isolation room, where he was swabbed and tested for COVID-19. Once tested positive, a nurse provided them with a bed in the isolation unit. Since Lauren also suffered from a cough, she was allowed to stay with her son in the unit. "They gave him medicine and they kept him stripped off and on fluids to bring his temperature down. I couldn’t fault the hospital staff. They reassured me, kept me informed and asked if he wanted anything. They even brought me tea and coffee!"
After being kept under observation overnight from Thursday until Friday evening, the hospital allowed them to return home, but with strict isolation restrictions. ‘‘The hospital advised that as long as I could give Alfie medicine – I would be able to self-isolate us all at home. He’s still recovering now after a week and a day. Today is the first day he has asked for food and has been playing a little bit. He still has a cough and a slight temperature but he is getting better." After her post went viral, Lauren said, "I just wanted people to take it seriously, stop acting like it’s nothing and they won’t get affected, they might not, but they can pass it on to others."
"I don’t have a choice but to power on, I have an 18-month-old daughter as well as Alfie and we are all ill now, just not to the extent that Alfie was. It was truly one of the worst experiences of my life, hearing my son ask if he was going to die and seeing the genuine panic and upset in his eyes broke my heart." Lauren begged to take the virus outbreak more seriously and adhere to the advice provided by the government. "Since being home I can’t fault our family, friends and Alfie’s school for helping us out and making sure we have everything we need." She thanked everyone for their help and support after returning from the hospital.