Laura Noonan and her husband Archie O'Connor with their daughter, Freya Lilly
Ballymahon doctor, Laura Noonan, was on a flight from Moscow in January, which saw a man fall ill with symptoms consistent with Coronavirus and be taken from the plane to a waiting ambulance, while terrified passengers were issued leaflets advising them to self-isolate and contact their doctor if they felt any symptoms coming on.
Since then, the local woman, who has been receiving treatment in Moscow for a rare illness she has had for a long number of years, has been in hospital and, in a post to her Facebook page, Laura's Russian Lifeline last night, Laura expressed her utter terror at the threat of the virus.
"It’s been decided that now it’s time to panic. Now it’s time to do all we can to slow the spread of this virus: now that it’s already too late," said Laura.
"We had a unique opportunity to actually be pro active on this one.... to do all we could to stop it arriving here or at least contain it if prevention proved too ambitious. How many weeks is it now since the shambolic semi quarantined flight home from Moscow which was an actual dress rehearsal for the real thing which we all knew was on the way?
"I am scared. I am angry. I am alone. And I am about to be even more alone.... I have weathered possibly the worst week of my journey and am just about holding my own again."
Laura began her post by explaining that she had just come through a week that she was "not ready to talk about", but clarified that none of the suffering she has been through in recent days is Coronavirus-related.
But "Coronavirus is real" she said; "its's here and it's dangerous".
"I don’t want to mess with it or tempt fate any further. I’m not the luckiest person alive. Corona is the perceived threat and what we are attempting to limit spread of by limiting visiting but in doing so it’s also limiting my healing, limiting my already limited social outlets, limiting my access to my home comforts or something I think I might want on a whim," she said.
"Health is the crown of the well that only the sick can see..... I can see so many people taking their health for granted and in doing so risking the health of the more vulnerable members of society."
The HSE has issued a number of guidelines to prevent the spread of Coronavirus:
- Wash your hands properly and often.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough and sneeze.
- Put used tissues into a bin and wash your hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Try to avoid close contact with people who are not well.
- Follow the travel advice from the Department of Foreign Affairs.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.