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Living with Covid-19 for 10 months: UK man hospitalised seven times, tested positive 43 times

25 June 2021 - 12:05 By cebelihle bhengu
A 72-year-old man from Bristol in the UK has tested positive for Covid-19 43 times. Stock photo.
A 72-year-old man from Bristol in the UK has tested positive for Covid-19 43 times. Stock photo.
Image: 123RF/Jarun Ontakrai

Dave Smith, 72, from Bristol in the UK, has lived with an active coronavirus infection for 10 months, the longest period recorded. 

Called “the miracle man” by healthcare professionals, Smith told BBC News on Thursday that he has constantly prayed for negative test results but without luck.

“I had a terrible cough. I woke up and coughed for five hours non-stop. I don’t mean cough and there’s a break. I mean coughed for five hours and non-stop. You can imagine the drain that puts on your body.

“I counted the tests and each one was positive. I kept praying the next one was going to be negative. It never was,” he said about a string of positive tests since contracting the coronavirus in March last year.

Smith said he has tested 43 times for Covid-19 and has been hospitalised seven times. He told the station he had gone as far as to plan his funeral, only to live through the ordeal for almost a year.

SA has also seen a few recurring cases of Covid-19 infection.

Dr Ryan Noach, CEO at Discovery Health, told Cape Talk: “We have four members who in each of the three waves has contracted Covid-19. We have made direct contact with these members to confirm the infections and some are asymptomatic each time they contract it,” he said.

Noach said reinfection is a cause for concern and warned against complacency.

There have been other interesting stories globally about people infected with Covid-19.

A 116-year-old French nun, Sister André, became the second oldest person in the world to beat Covid-19. She survived after the coronavirus killed 10 people in the old age home where she lives.

NBC News reported that she didn’t know she had contracted the coronavirus.

“I was very tired and lived through it like that — and then I realised I was sicker than I thought. I wasn’t scared because I’m not scared of dying,” she said.