A Vernon woman turned to Facebook to share her COVID-19 experience and warn others, especially those who have been in contact with her, to stay at home and follow recommendations outlined by health officials. (Dreamstime - TNS)

Vernon woman says she has COVID-19

Local woman shares symptoms, experience in social media tell-all post

A Vernon woman has taken to social media to alert her community that she has contracted COVID-19, but Interior Health cannot confirm any specific cases.

“I have COVID-19 virus,” Michelle Regnier wrote in a social media post. “I sincerely hope that this sickness just stops and goes away, too many lives have been taken.”

Regnier said she felt unwell as of March 12, but the next morning she was showing flu-like symptoms.

On March 14, Regnier said she woke up with a headache, sore throat and was coughing “like I have never coughed before.”

By March 13, she said she was coughing “non-stop” and a fever started.

“Oh my god, the lungs and surrounding ribs hurt so much,” she wrote. “Never ever had such pain all over.”

She said Tylenol 3 did nothing to diminish her pain.

She said was taken to hospital by ambulance on March 17 after the 811 recording recommended she seek further medical attention as she was struggling to breathe.

“The doc said, ‘yes, you seem to have COVID-19, here is a prescription for penicillin and a puffer to open the airways in your lungs,’” Regnier wrote.

Regnier wrote she spoke with Interior Health and was told she could have contracted the virus as early as the first week of March.

“I can’t believe how fast this moves in the body, it really takes a lot out of you,” she wrote.

Now she is urging anyone who has been in contact with her before her symptoms were showing to self-isolate.

As of March 19, there were 12 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Interior Health region, bringing the provincial total up to 271.

A young Vernon mother has also turned to social media to alert the public she “probably has COVID-19” and is also self-isolating.

There are also reports that there may be a case in Enderby, but until the patient comes forward, these details can’t be confirmed.

Interior Health does not release specific details of patients due to privacy reasons.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said no one will be officially identified, nor will the specific location of confirmed cases, unless public health providers cannot be certain they have reached all those who may need to be contacted and alerted they may be a risk to the public.

“This is being transmitted very rapidly,” Dr. Henry said.

“It doesn’t serve anybody to think that it’s not – ‘it won’t affect me. It’s not in my community. It won’t affect my family.’ We know people travel back from all over the place. We know that we can’t always tell everybody that has this disease. The precautions that we’re putting out are for everybody in every community across B.C. right now, so that we can stop the transmission everywhere in our communities here today.”

READ MORE: Vernon pot stores see sales rise amid COVID-19

READ MORE: Line forms as Kelowna’s Superstore only lets in 500 at a time due to COVID-19


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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