Castlegar doctor Megan Taylor contracted COVID-19 in November. This photo was taken before the pandemic. Photo: Submitted

Castlegar doctor Megan Taylor contracted COVID-19 in November. This photo was taken before the pandemic. Photo: Submitted

Kootenay doctor shares experience contracting COVID-19

Castlegar doctor shares her COVID experience

As a primary care provider, Dr. Megan Taylor knew she had a risk of contacting COVID-19. So she followed safety protocols, wore PPE, practised diligent hygiene and sanitizing routines. But still, the virus that has infected millions across the world found its way into her body.

One day near the end of November as Taylor was finishing up her work day, she began to experience flu-like body aches and chills.

“I was certain it was COVID,” said Taylor. “I knew there wasn’t a flu circulating in the community.”

When she got home she went straight to her bedroom, telling her family she was entering quarantine. She then went online and booked a COVID test for the following day.

Taylor puts herself in the “moderately ill” category. Her acute phase lasted nine days and included a high fever, muscle aches, body pain, chills, headaches, profound fatigue, loss of appetite, insomnia, cough and shortness of breath.

“It was like a really bad flu, that lasted a really long time,” says Taylor.

Being a doctor, Taylor had a few benefits that others do not have, including the ability to monitor her own oxygen saturation levels.

“I did feel reasonably short of breath, and didn’t want to be that person that dies at home with COVID,” she said. “But I also didn’t want to expose any of my colleagues unnecessarily.”

She treated her symptoms with acetaminophen, ibuprofen, lot of fluids and a lot of rest.

Her fever, muscle pains and headaches lasted nine days, but the fatigue, cough and shortness of breath lasted another 10 days.

Taylor said it took nearly two months to get her energy level back to normal.

She was able to return to work after three weeks, but was very tired.

Her quarantine techniques worked, and no one else in her household contracted the illness.

MY COVID STORY: From typical teen to suffering patient

Taylor was open about sharing her experience from the beginning, reaching out to Castlegar News in early December with a public letter urging people to take the virus seriously.

She says she hasn’t experienced discrimination regarding her diagnoses.

“People have been kind,” said Taylor. “But I recognize that I benefit from people knowing I caught it at work.”

Taylor’s main message for others: “I don’t recommend getting COVID — it was not fun! But in all seriousness, I would like people to know that this is more than the flu — it is more contagious than regular flu and for many people it will cause much higher rates of death and disability than the flu. Please take it seriously.”

Taylor is encouraging everyone to follow the public health guidelines and to get the vaccine when it becomes available. But she doesn’t think people need to take extreme measures over and above the current regulations.

She does not have any extended family in the area, so she says she feels fortunate and thankful to have the many friends and colleagues who supported her in her illness. People dropped off food, sent messages of concern and colleagues stepped up to take care of her patients.

Even though current numbers in the area remain very low, Taylor is encouraging everyone to remain vigilant.

“Follow the rules, so if there is a case brought in, it just stops at that one case. Otherwise it can go from one case to 100 in a short time,” she says.

Fighting vaccine hesitancy is also really important to Taylor.

“I know we are all tired of COVID and just want our normal lives back,” adds Taylor. “We are getting closer. Don’t give up — do your best to follow the rules, get vaccinated when you can and try to maintain your hope.”



betsy.kline@castlegarnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Matthew Balogh was last seen in Abbotsford on Sunday, April 18 at 10 a.m.
Police seek help in locating missing 17-year-old in Abbotsford

Matthew Balogh was last seen at 10 a.m. on Sunday, April 18

Michael Colmant, a former manager of Abbotsford International Airport, was killed in a hit-and-run in Washington state while he was riding his bicycle.
Abbotsford man dies in hit-and-run while cycling in Washington

Seattle police still searching for driver of vehicle that killed Michael Colmant

Sasquatch Days typically takes place in May but has been canceled the past two years due to COVID-19. The Sts’ailes First Nation recently announced this year’s cancelation. (Photo/Tourism Harrison)
2021 Sasquatch Days canceled due to COVID-19

Second year in a row the pandemic canceled this event

..
Abbotsford nurse at ‘breaking point’ pleads with public to take COVID-19 seriously

Instagram post urges general population to stay home, wear a mask and get vaccinated

The Independent Investigations Office of BC (IIO) (File Photo)
IIO investigating after man seriously injured by police dog during Abbotsford arrest

Independent Investigations Office looking into incident from March 6 in 3700 block of Davie Street

FILE – NDP Leader John Horgan, right, and local candidate Mike Farnworth greet one another with an elbow bump during a campaign stop in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday, September 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. won’t be using random individual road stops to enforce travel rules: Safety Minister

Minister Mike Farnworth says travel checks only being considered at major highway junctions, ferry ports

Surrey RCMP reunited three stolen puppies with their mom. (RCMP handout)
Puppies stolen from South Surrey home located, reunited with mom

Surrey RCMP said they found the stolen puppies on April 16

A woman is vaccinated at a Maple Ridge clinic. (Black Press files)
Fraser Health providing priority AZ immunization for people 40+ in COVID hotpots

Six Surrey neighbourhoods, North Delta, PoCo, South Langley Township, and West Abbotsford targeted

The city asking the public if they want to pursue legal action against the province and their decision to override the city on the Victory Church issue. (Jesse Day Western News)
Penticton to sue province over homeless shelter

City council voted unanimously to go forward with legal action

Cash seized in a 2018 RCMP drug bust in the Lower Mainland. (Contributed)
Kelowna RCMP-led drug investigation nets charges for 4 in Lower Mainland

Cops seized 12 kilograms of MDMA and $380K executing several search warrants in the Lower Mainland in 2018

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Welcome to your park sign marks the spot where 84th Avenue will continue east from King George Boulevard to 140th Street as part of a $13 million road project. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Road Rage: Opposition mounts anew to Surrey’s Bear Creek traffic plan

Same place, same project, same fight as Surrey prepares once again to connect 84th Avenue between King George and 140th Street in Newton

Most Read