COVID survivor in Omaha-metro encourages vaccinations following complications

Captured recording after NFL Thursday.
Published: Sep. 10, 2021 at 4:58 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Looking at 36-year-old Sarah Drummond today, you’d think she’s just like any other young mom of a two-year-old.

But talking with her, she’ll tell you the battle she faces is internal.

“I still get fatigued, I’m back to work eight hours a day but I’m still tired. I still get out of breath. I became diabetic from COVID,” she said.

The illness hit her hard and fast last November just three weeks before a vaccine was available. Drummond tested positive on a Friday and days later was life-flighted to Jennie Edmundson Hospital and placed on a ventilator.

“Think of it like you’re living in a shell and you can’t move, you can’t talk, you can’t voice yourself. You’re just there. You see the world going around you and you’re just there.”

For the next five weeks, it was just touch and go. Her physician, Dr. Sumit Mukherjee, remembers calling her husband and telling him he didn’t know if she’ll make it.

All while Drummond’s 15-month-son Aiden screamed for his mom in the background.

”I mean it really sunk in at that point that, it was very possible that this child was not going to have a mother,” said Dr. Mukherjee.

Eventually, she woke up, was taken off the ventilator, and transferred to rehab. Two months there and she could finally see her family again.

“That long without seeing him, my son didn’t really know who I was. I mean it took him a long time because I looked different. I lost most of my hair, I lost a lot of weight,” said Sarah.

When Drummond contracted the virus, it was before people her age and younger were being affected so severely.

“But look at what it did to me. It can do that to just about anybody. I don’t think it picks and chooses, it’ll attack anybody,” she said.

That’s not the case now, doctors across the Omaha-metro seeing younger and younger patients.

“This has been a very difficult month,” said Dr. Mukherjee.

Which is why Dr. Mukherjee is encouraging Drummond and patients like her to speak up.

“You have a voice, and use the voice to tell your story because I think think that will certainly help people realize what we are dealing with,” said Dr. Mukherjee.

Drummond’s using her voice to ask people to get vaccinated.

“You just look at great things vaccines can do, I mean granted there are always cons with everything but we don’t have to worry about our kids getting smallpox, I would really like to live in a world where I don’t have to worry about my son getting COVID,” said Sarah.

After seeing what she went through, Drummond’s 13-year-old niece decided to take her health into her own hands and get the vaccine. Drummond hopes it’s a snowball effect and other young people choose to do the same.

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