Winnipeg man feels ‘blessed’ to have beaten coronavirus early in pandemic

A Winnipeg man who caught the novel coronavirus on a trip to Mexico near the beginning of the pandemic says he feels blessed that he came through the experience unscathed.

Ryan Caliguri told 680 CJOB he’s received a lot of flack online from people who can’t believe he didn’t know much about the disease at the time — but when he headed overseas the first week of March, COVID-19 was still a minor concern throughout much of the world.

“We were kind of not sure whether we should go or not, but at that point, we were reading some news stories that said it was not going to be that big of a deal,” he said.

“So I went down on vacation with three other friends to Cabo San Lucas.

“I was there for about three days, and on day three, I woke up with chills — very cold. I just thought it was the air conditioning unit… it was not the air conditioning unit.”

Caliguri said he began to get more and more fatigued, with worsening chills, and that he knew something was wrong, but didn’t know it was COVID-19.

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On his return to Winnipeg, he said, he was told by a border agent to stay home and quarantine. On the second day home, he called Health Links to get a test, and a week-and-a-half later, it was confirmed: he had contracted the coronavirus.

Overall, Caliguri’s advice is to listen to the latest information that’s coming out about the virus. Details, he said, have been changing drastically from week to week — especially since his March diagnosis — and had he known the severity of the illness, he probably would have thought twice about the vacation that led to it.

The province’s top public health official, Dr. Brent Roussin, said Friday that Manitoba has been doing a good job following public health orders and keeping infections low.

“Our numbers have been flat as of late thanks to Manitobans’ strong efforts,” he said.

Roussin also reminded Manitobans that people with any kind of respiratory symptoms should not be heading out as safety restrictions ease, and they should call Health Links to get tested.

 

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