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Royal Surrey Staff Applaud as 100th Coronavirus Patient Heads Back Home At Last

Published on: 24 Apr, 2020
Updated on: 24 Apr, 2020

The Royal Surrey serves a population of more than 336,000 across south-west Surrey.

Staff at the Royal Surrey lined the hospital exit corridor and broke into applause as their 100th coronavirus patient was wheeled out on his way home.

Tim Hall, 37, from Guildford had arrived there by ambulance 11 days earlier, struggling to breathe. “I just remember it being difficult and hurting,” he said. “It was horrible and really scared me.”

Once stabilised, Mr Hall was placed on a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device.

“I will be forever grateful for the staff at the hospital, they were absolutely amazing,” Mr Hall added. “They would sit with me for hours just talking and keeping my spirits high, which made me feel more calm and positive.”

Wendy Fuller, matron of Compton ward, said: “Everyone at the Trust is delighted Tim responded well to treatment and he can now rest and recuperate at home with his wife and children.”

The CPAP device is an alternative breathing aid and, unlike with ventilation, allows the patient to remain conscious and breathing independently throughout, something Mr Hall said “was a big deal for me to know what was going on around me”.

The Trust is trialling a new version of a CPAP device designed by Mercedes F1 in collaboration with engineers at University College London, which is more efficient and therefore uses less oxygen.

Professor Lui Forni, consultant in intensive care at the Trust, said: “The CPAP machine involves oxygen being pushed into a patient’s airways at a continuous high pressure, ensuring the lungs stay open even if the alveolis within the lung have collapsed.

“Patients on CPAP devices do not need to be sedated and can therefore feel more in control and involved in their care. These also free the supply of ventilators for those who critically need them.”

Before Mr Hall set off home, he said: “Anything you think is worth going outside for, it’s not. Not when you could potentially see your children for the last time. Social distancing saves lives.”

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