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Alba Iulia
Thursday, October 1, 2020

Melbourne aged care nurse returns to work after three week recovery from COVID-19

A Filipino nurse in Melbourne has returned to work on the frontline after recovering from COVID-19 in hospital and hotel.

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A 30-year-old Filipino nurse named Kaya who works at an aged care facility in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs shares her horrible experience when she discovered that she tested positive for coronavirus. The frontliner works in a facility with a coronavirus outbreak of over 130 cases, and at least 20 deaths.

After testing positive for coronavirus, she was kept in hospital to recover for eight days and required to stay in hotel quarantine for another ten days.

Nurse Kaya Jebulan from Oakleigh East shares her story:

I was preparing to go to work when I suddenly collapsed at home. When I regained my consciousness, I can barely remember anything. I had to call an ambulance because I woke up with a severe headache and bump on my head. On that day, I had no symptoms.

I was brought to the nearest hospital at Monash Medical Centre in Clayton and was suspected to be a Covid case when they found out that I work as a nurse in an aged care facility with a Covid outbreak. I had a fever when they tested me for Covid.

I can’t describe how I felt when my Covid swab result came out positive.

I couldn’t help but get emotional

As my situation started to sink in, I was worried as I was uncertain of what this virus can do to me in the next few days. I know I needed to be strong for my 1-year old son and family back home in the Philippines.

It was agonising to spend eight days in the hospital and ten days in hotel quarantine. While in hospital I needed to be monitored as I had a persistent fever, my blood pressure was low, my heart rate was above normal.

I was alone for 3 weeks!

Kaya Jebulan was in hospital for eight days while recovering from coronavirus

It difficult because aside from the fact that I am away from my family, strictly no visitors were allowed in hospital and hotel isolation.

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But I couldn’t be more grateful because I recovered when it could have been worse.

I’m so happy to be back on the frontline after missing work for 3 weeks. At the same time, my heart breaks knowing that I will never see the same faces again because Covid has claimed the lives of many of our aged care residents.

Kaya Jebulan (right) at the aged care facility with her Filipino colleague, Sunshine

My experience has completely shifted my perspective in life.

It has taught me to be more compassionate as a nurse. I returned to work on Thursday August 20.

Kaya on her first shift back with her Filipino colleagues Danica, Judy and Eunice

This pandemic is far from over. Think of your family and loved ones. We all have a part to play to fight this virus. Wear your face masks, practice social distancing and please stay home if you can.


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