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Care home worker suffering 'long-Covid' urges people to have vaccine

By Louise Glen

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Sarah MacDougall as she learns to walk with a stick.
Sarah MacDougall as she learns to walk with a stick.

A care home worker who was one of the first in the Highlands to survive Covid is calling on people to get vaccinated as soon as they can.

Sarah MacDougall (43), who now suffers from ‘long Covid’, says she does not want anyone to go through what she has had to endure.

Mrs MacDougall, from Blarmore Avenue, Inverness, who spent two weeks in a coma in intensive care, says she wants the Covid vaccine as soon as possible.

It is now nine months since she was diagnosed with the killer virus.

She said: “I have not been given a date for my vaccine, but I will get it as soon as I can.

“This is a deadly virus and no-one should have to go through what we have all been through.

“I want everyone who can to get the vaccine, as the consequences of Covid and what they are calling long Covid are not nice.”

Mrs MacDougall previously called for Covid victims to contact her, in a bid to start a support group.

Mrs MacDougall, who is married to Harry, said it was the love of friends and family, as well as her church and “excellent” nursing care that has helped her on her long road to recovery.

“I now walk with a stick and I use a three-wheeled walker when I am out at the shops,” she said.

Sarah MacDougall as she recovered from Covid-19 in hospital.
Sarah MacDougall as she recovered from Covid-19 in hospital.

“I am a relatively young woman so people stare at me – I am not shy and I tell them I am a Covid survivor and that they need to be careful.”

Mrs MacDougall, a cook at Ach-An-Eas Care Home in Inverness, admits that it will be a long time until she can get back to work.

She said: “I am missing my work and all the residents, but it might be some time, if ever, that I can get back to work.

“I have been left with a lack of movement in my foot and leg, which means I have needed the support and care of Harry.

“He was on furlough from his work at Dingbro so that meant he was here at home to care for me, but I cannot imagine what I would have done without him.

“When he went back to work on November 3, I had to become more independent. I am back driving, but only a few miles at a time. And I love shopping but I have not been able to do very much of that.”

Mrs MacDougall took up a fitness class through High Life Highland, which she says has made a remarkable difference.

She said: “I was going to an Otago class at Inverness Leisure, and I am learning to walk again.

“I am doing around 200 steps without my stick, which is a great achievement. I have been the young girl at the class – but that hasn’t bothered me. It was lovely to get out and safely meet other people.”

She warned: “People need to be very careful, especially with this new stain. I am lucky to be alive and well.

“My message to everyone is: please, please be careful.”

Read more:Long covid will slow Covid victims recovery.

Covid suffer wants others with the condition to contact her.

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