My COVID Story: “We knew we wouldn’t get hospital admission without a COVID positive report”


Vagisha Mehta and her mother developed COVID symptoms in April when from oxygen supply to medicines, everything was in acute shortage. Thankfully with the right treatment, they both recovered. Here is her COVID experience
I am Vagisha Mehta, a student at Bennett University. I am 21 years old and today I want to share my COVID experience.
It all started when I and my mother, Pratibha Mehta (45 years) started developing symptoms on April 20. While I only had cough, my mother was coughing continuously, having cold and a sudden weakness. I called up my father Sukh Kant Mehta, who is a health worker in Medanta hospital, and informed him about the situation. He asked us to take steam 2-3 times and rest.

Later in the evening when my father arrived, he checked our temperatures and oxygen levels. I did not have fever and my SPO2 was normal as well, but my mother’s temperature was 100°C with 98 SPO2. After consulting, my father gave her medicines as prescribed by our family doctor. Just for a precaution, we isolated her. However, we didn’t rush for the COVID test at the first place as we were staying strictly at home. The only point of our contacting the virus was our father as he works in a hospital dealing with COVID patients. But a few days back, even he had heavy throat, cough and cold. So, he got his RT-PCR done which came out to be negative. That is why we thought we had viral and decided to wait for sometime to get tested.
The next day, my mother didn’t show any sign of improvement. Things took a turn when her oxygen level started falling from 98 to 94. She was also feeling extreme weakness, and she spent entire day lying on the bed. By now, even I had around 100°C fever and lost my sense of smell. Now, we were in utter confusion that whether we should go for a test or not as hospitals were themselves COVID hotspots. Even if you get a test in a hospital, reports were taking 4-5 days and we weren’t sure if the result would even be relevant after 4-5 days. But still our doctor advised us to get RT-PCR done as soon as possible because god forbid if my mother needs oxygen (hovering between 93-94) or a hospital bed, then admission would first require COVID positive report. Even after having contacts in almost every hospital in Delhi, my father couldn’t find a place from where we could get our reports earlier. At that time, there was a lot of panic everywhere because of jump in cases and deaths. There was queues everywhere, for tests, for admission, for vaccination, everything. However, as it was necessary, we finally decided to go for tests the next morning.

On April 22, my mother weakened further. We couldn’t take her for the test in that condition. So, I asked my father to let me go and give my sample at least so that if it comes negative (which we were hoping), then I could do other household chores and look after my sister, and my father could focus only on treating my mother. I gave my sample that day itself at a nearby hospital, and was told that I will get the report after 4-5 days. Interestingly, for billing it took me over 4 hours, while my test was done just within 15-20 minutes! As soon as I came home, I started coughing continuously and also had high fever by now. My father started giving medication to me as told by our doctor. And now, I also moved in isolation with my mother.

My mother was yet to be tested. We finally found a person who collected her sample from home the next day as she couldn’t move out due to weakness.

Interestingly, my report came very next day. And to our surprise, it came positive. My report didn’t change our course of action. My Covid treatment had started by now but my mother and I remained in the same room as her report was due to come. Next morning, another surprise awaited us. She tested negative. It was a sigh a relief for us as she could now move out of isolation. But she still had all the symptoms, worst being her weakness and continuous fever.

Our doctor advised to start giving her steroids and continue with her COVID medication only as it was quite some time from the day she started having symptoms. We couldn’t find the steroids nearby so my father called up his friend at Medanta asking him to look for them in the hospital’s pharmacy. We are really thankful that he came all the way to our home just to give those medicines.

My mother didn’t have COVID but on doctor’s advice we started her steroids. So we were worried that just in case if they react and cause more pain than relief. But thankfully, nothing of that sort happen and my mother actually started doing well after taking steroids.

Now, only I was in isolation. As it is known, that initial 4-5 days are very difficult as your symptoms are on its peak. It was the same for me too.

Technology really proves to be the best at such time as it helps you to stay connected with your near and dear ones through phone calls, video calls etc. when you can’t physically meet them. Isolation period is difficult for some, while refreshing for others. It depends on how you choose to spend it. Do whatever you like, be it painting, listening to music, watching web series, writing, or just thinking to start something new in life. But remember, do whatever you want in a way that you don’t exert yourself.

Gradually, I started feeling well and even my mother’s health also improved. Now, it’s been 2 weeks that I am out of isolation. The day I came out of isolation, I felt like I have moved to some new place! The feeling was so good. Fighting with my sister for TV’s remote, sitting with family and having conversations, having dinner together, were some of the things I really missed during isolation.

It is being said that in the second wave of Covid-19, all family members are being infected. I myself know a lot of families who have tested positive. In such a scenario, I am really glad that in my family, only I was the one infected.

My family, friends, neighbors and relatives, supported us throughout by whatever means they could. I would really like to thank each one of them for being there for us. Especially my father, who literally took up all the responsibilities of the home for those 2 weeks. One of the biggest reasons of our early recovery were the efforts put in by my him only.

Here are some of the tips I would like to share:-

• On getting symptoms, please try to get your test done as soon as possible and isolate yourself till the time your report comes even if you’re asymptomatic.

• Try to have necessary equipments in your home such as thermometer, oximeter, steamer, blood pressure machine etc.

• Don’t panic and rush to a hospital if your oxygen levels drop. According to doctors, patients with SPO2 90 or above can be treated at home itself using prone position.

• Never use steroids or injections like remdesivir without consulting your doctor. In many cases, there overuse or misuse have proved to be dangerous.

• If possible, try to do some of the work yourself during home isolation so that you prevent others to get in contact with you, reducing their chance of getting infected.

• Ensure you wear a mask (N95 preferably) when you are in home isolation at all times.

• Post-Covid as well, please stay indoors only and avoid meeting people outside of your building/locality for at least 6-8 weeks.

• If you don’t have Covid, or if you’ve recovered from it, try to help people in whatever way possible.

• Most importantly, take the vaccine as soon as you are eligible.

There are some interesting takeaways from my story. First, I was staying indoors but still caught Covid. One possibility I can think of for this is that of the virus being air-borne. Second, my mother had more symptoms than me, still she tested negative. Incorrect report might be the reason for it. We still aren’t sure of what actually happened to her. We also thought that it might be due to side-effects of the first vaccine dose she took some 10 days back. Whatsoever it was, we are finally out of this now.

According to data, over 90% of people are getting alright in home isolation only. We have to understand that it’s just a disease which is curable if the patient is given medication at the right time. And for prevention, we should follow all the guidelines in place. I am repeating myself, please don’t panic and consult your doctor before taking any step yourself.

Even if one person connects to my story, or if it helps anyone or gives hope and strength that just by following some precautions we can overcome the situation, my motive of writing this will be fulfilled.

Take care everyone.

Did you fight COVID-19? We want to hear all about it. ETimes Lifestyle is calling all the survivors of COVID to share their stories of survival and hope.

Write to us at with ‘My COVID story’ in the subject line

We will publish your experience.
The views expressed in this article should not be considered as a substitute for a physician’s advice. Please consult your treating physician for more details.

Stephen Emmanuel
Stephen Emmanuel


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