A nonagenarian from Washington state who was diagnosed with the novel coronavirus after an outbreak in her nursing home has full recovered.
Geneva Wood, 90, suffered a stroke right after Christmas and had been living in the Life Care Center in Kirkland, where she contracted COVID-19. In fact, before she became ill, she was just days away from being discharged.
Then the outbreak started, and the center was locked down.
Wood’s family was devastated to find out that, just as she was recovering from a stroke, she had been stricken with a virus sweeping the world. But the 90-year-old grandmother had an entirely different outlook.
“I’m going to fight this for my family and make everyone proud,” she told her daughter, Cami Neidigh. Wood has five children, 11 grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren, and three great-great-grandchildren.
Neidigh described her mother as “a survivor” and a “very determined” woman, but there came a point when she was really worried her mom would succumb to the coronavirus.
“When she fell and broke her hip, I knew she would be disappointed and be a bit down for a little while, [but] I knew that she would pull herself up again and get busy to get better,” she recalled. “[But when] they took her to Harborview [for a coronavirus test] and put her in isolation is when I started to worry. She needs her family. She doesn’t do well by herself. I was afraid this would be her straw and she would give up. She did. She declined until the doctor called with concerns that they felt she wasn’t going to make it and for us to come to the hospital.”
Eventually, her infection progressed to the point she could have no visitors whatsoever — even if her family suited up in protective gear, as they had been doing. Instead, nurses set up video chats twice a day. Wood’s family was just waiting for the inevitable: they were certain she would die.
Wood, though, was not giving up.
She kept fighting, pushing through the symptoms of the coronavirus.
After a series of tests, on March 22, doctors said her results for COVID-19 finally came back negative. The medical staff who had been taking care of Wood told her she was coronavirus-free by coming into her room — all without masks.
Neidigh described her mom’s recovery as “a true miracle.”
“We get to hug her, hold her hand and tell her how many people she’s inspired,” she said, noting she got into her car and rushed to the nursing home as soon ash she heard the news. “Getting this virus is not necessarily a death sentence for the elderly or anybody,” Neidigh continued. “Be more afraid of spreading it. It’s a wake-up call to take care of each other. Find positive ways to help others out.”