By Shermain Bique-Charles
One of the country’s most critically ill coronavirus patients – who spent more than two months in intensive care – took his first shaky steps this week.
Father-of-one Keith Dover continues to recover at home after severe complications from Covid-19 which saw him breathing through a ventilator for weeks at Mount St John’s Medical Centre (MSJMC).
“Keith is getting better. Not walking on his own. He took his first steps on Tuesday. Still, he has a long way to go,” his sister, Tracy Dover, told Observer.
She said her brother, 38, remains in good spirits despite his ordeal. Dover is suspected to have contracted the potentially deadly disease when he travelled to Montserrat for St Patrick’s Day in March.
Reports are that when he returned, he complained of feeling unwell and his health deteriorated.
“He is happy to be home and he is driven to making a good recovery,” Tracy Dover assured Observer.
Excessive bed rest can lead to contractures, muscle weakness and a loss of skeletal mass and it can take time to regain strength after a period of immobility.
In Dover’s case, his mobility deteriorated, which means he now requires physiotherapy.
“His therapy is going well. He is proud of himself,” his sister continued.
The family did not disclose many details about Dover’s experience in the intensive care unit but Tracy said, “we are just happy for him being back home. Everyone is rallying around him and pushing him. We are his support team”.
Dover suffers from diabetes which medics say places people at a much higher rate of serious complications and death from Covid. Other conditions which can exacerbate coronavirus problems include asthma, heart disease, cancer and obesity.
Meanwhile, a doctor with Covid-19 who also spent an extended period in intensive care remains at MSJMC. Information on his progress has been sparse and his name has never been officially divulged.
To date, the country has recorded 74 cases of the coronavirus and, of those, three people have died and 57 have recovered.
According to the latest dashboard published by the government, as of Wednesday there were 13 active cases in Antigua and Barbuda.