Alastair Bitsóí's recovery from COVID-19 and an earthquake

Indian Country Today

"My family was begging me to come back to Navajo, but I was like, no, I don't want to be a cause for community spread. I care for you and love you all."

COVID-19 survivor Alastair Bitsoi was frustrated and experienced a wide range of emotions when he was initially denied healthcare coverage, even though he pays for healthcare through his employer. 

In early March when he started having symptoms he was denied the test because he didn't meet the Center for Disease Control guidelines, which have since been amended. At the time his symptoms were deemed mild and he didn't have any known direct contact with an infected person, even though he told doctors he had just returned from New York City where the virus was spreading.

Bitsóí relied on natural remedies, like sage, juniper and cedar as well as over the counter remedies like Mucinex, Tylenol and Pedialyte.

He finally got tested at the University of Utah Healthcare System's drive-up testing location. He received a positive test the next day. He was at home sleeping when a 5.7 earthquake jolted Salt Lake City. It was his first earthquake.

"I just, I rode it out and, but I was just like, this is crazy. This we're in this pandemic. Earthquakes are happening. Like so there's more fear." 

Now he wants to warn everyone to take the necessary precautions to limit exposure. 

"I was frustrated. I was cursing around, I was just like, how can a person get through this if they're experiencing this and it's a pandemic. I was just like, like angry, like upset, like all these ranges of emotions because I was denied health care and I pay for healthcare through my work. I should have an advantage in this case. It was just really frustrating."

"If I didn't advocate for myself I would've been an under-reported case in the whole pandemic."

"I still have anxiety over family, I hope they minimize exposure."

Also on the daily newscast, Washington Editor Jourdan Bennett-Begaye reports updated COVID-19 numbers in Indian Country.

The host of the program is Patty Talahongva, executive producer of Indian Country Today.

Comments (1)
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James bond4010
James bond4010

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