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Holding on to Hope During Isolation: Part 2

By Amanda Virrey

In my first entry, I narrated my dear one’s ordeal in being subjected to an isolation facility against his will. You may read the previous post to get the full details on the first part of this story.

Thankfully, the inflammation in his leg that had resulted from an infected wound was reduced through IV antibiotics. However, it did not escape him to notice some discrepancies in the hospital that he was admitted to.

First, he found it unprofessional for his doctor to inform him of traces of pneumonia in his chest X-ray without actually showing him the X-ray itself, even after he insisted on it. Second, he had to wait for half an hour before the nurse could give him drinking water in times of need. Lastly, as a “COVID-19 patient” without any respiratory symptoms, he was left to share the room with patients whose viral symptoms could further infect him.

Four days after his admission to the hospital, he was transferred to an isolation facility somewhere in Kalibo. Through his strong faith in God, he endured the second half of his mandatory isolation in a cozy cabana with a small terrace where he could catch a few wisps of fresh air and sunlight. Though he was satisfied by the pleasant ambience and hospitable attendants of the facility, he was, by no means provided free medical care and medications. In fact, he had to consult Tele-Medico and ask the attendants to buy medicines and other stuff for him.

Now, grateful for being back on the island, he sat with me, relieving the burden of the psychological turmoil he had gone through during isolation, both in the hospital and in the isolation facility. He said that he was grateful for his strong faith in God, which gave him mental clarity despite the isolation that he was subjected to against his will, much like a prisoner. If not for his Bible and his internet data that allowed him constant conversations with his loved ones, he might have succumbed to depression in such strict solitary confinement with no one to ease his mental illness.

Unfortunately, my friend’s isolation experience was just one among four that had come to my attention. There were also two lady friends of mine and a church leader who were immediately rushed to separate isolation facilities in different times on Mainland Malay after testing positive for COVID-19 from the RT-PCR Swab Test. All three relayed the mental challenges of strict solitary confinement that they were subjected to.

To be continued




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