RICHMOND, Va. -- A Virginia delegate issued a warning to the public after she and her family were diagnosed with the novel coronavirus.
Del. Delores McQuinn (D-Richmond) said her daughter arrived home from work feeling ill. She then tested positive for COVID-19 on March 18.
Doctors later diagnosed McQuinn and her husband with the coronavirus.
“It was a scary journey,” she recalled. “We were basically all here together trying to struggle through it.”
They all shared similar symptoms: cough, fever, body aches, loss of taste and smell, and loss of concentration.
“I want people to understand this is a serious disease, serious virus,” McQuinn explained. “This the flu magnified by 10.”
On Friday, the Virginia Department of Health reported the number of positive cases in the Commonwealth increased to 7,491.
More than 1,200 people have been hospitalized and 231 people have died from the coronavirus.
“What we have gone through so many families have gone through, so my condolences to so many families across this nation and in the Commonwealth,” McQuinn said. “Take it seriously and protect yourself, protect your family and protect your community.”
She grieved after the death of her friend for 30 years -- Bishop Gerald Glenn.
“When he succumbed to this disease, all of us were grief stricken by his death,” McQuinn stated.
Glenn died of complications from COVID-19 on April 11, the day before Easter.
“It’s going to be a major void in our community, absence of his presence and his booming voice. It’s going to be again a major loss to the Commonwealth,” McQuinn said.
McQuinn and her family continue to recover in isolation and believe they'll be OK. She urged Virginians to stay home and listen to the experts.
Most patients with COVID-19 have mild to moderate symptoms. However, in a small proportion of patients, COVID-19 can lead to more severe illness, including death, particularly among those who are older or those who have chronic medical conditions.
COVID-19 spreads primarily through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
Symptoms include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. Symptoms appear within 14 days of being exposed to an infectious person.
Virginia health officials urged the following precautions:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer only if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.Stay home when you are sick.
- Avoid contact with sick people.Avoid non-essential travel.