Many young and healthy people still mistakenly think they’re low-risk for catching coronavirus — or believe that if they do catch it, it won’t be that bad for them.
But LA-based author Bess Kalb, 33, whose dad is an ICU doctor based on the Upper West Side in New York City, is enlightening them about the horrific, agonizing, and lonely ways in which young people are dying from the virus around the world.
In a viral Twitter thread, Bess shared the disturbing things her MD dad is seeing in the hospital every day — including young people not making it off ventilators, suffering sudden stokes, and drowning when their immune systems attack their own lungs.
Scary stuff: LA-based author Bess Kalb, whose dad is an ICU doctor, shared the horrific, agonizing, and lonely ways in which young people are dying from the virus around the world
Stay home! Bess shared the disturbing things her MD dad is seeing in the hospital every day
Bess, a writer for Jimmy Kimmel Live and the author of ‘Nobody Will Tell You This But Me,’ tweeted her graphic warnings on Sunday, May 3, in response to people who went outside to relax in parks and beaches to enjoy the good weather this weekend.
‘My dad is an ICU doctor treating COVID-19 patients,’ she wrote.
Update: As of Monday morning, there had been more than 168,800 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New York City
‘In the past WEEK he has set more “I’ve never seen a heart rate/RBC count/etc. like this” records than in his decades-long career. What this virus does to the body is like “sticking your finger in an electric socket.” Stay home.’
Her dad that in some patients, the virus is actually eating red blood cells — at an alarming rate.
‘He had a patient who needed 8 blood transfusions in a morning even though he wasn’t bleeding. The coronavirus was just eating his red blood cells faster than his bone marrow could make them. It’s f***ing mystifying and brutal,’ she went on.
Horrific: He said young people are on ventilators, but even those who get off them are put on feeding tubes and dialysis Others are dying when their immune systems attack their lungs
Why we social distance: These young people are dying alone because there parents are allowed to be with them
‘If you are lucky enough to make it off a ventilator (the equivalent exertion required for that is running a marathon without training), you will likely get put on dialysis and a feeding tube next. It’s a nightmare. It’s hell.
‘It’s what you’re risking on your beach day.’
What’s more, she added, some young, healthy people with COVID-19 are dying from something called a ‘cytokine storm.’
‘Basically, you make it off a ventilator (maybe!), you get your appetite back a little, you think you’re turning a corner, and then your immune system rips through your lung tissue and you drown,’ she wrote.
‘The other common way young people are falling off the face of the earth from this are the random strokes it causes. Talking one minute, stroking out the next, and then the nurses have to go through the cell phone to find “Dad” because “Mom” usually insists on coming.
‘There have been a few “Papa Bear”s or “Daddy-O”s in the cell phones who have tried to come in to hold the bodies,’ she added.
Speak out: She urged healthcare workers to share their stories so people who are flouting social distancing take it seriously
The truth: Bess continued to respond to commenters, including ‘Trump commenters’ who argued that what she said wasn’t true
‘They can’t, of course. You die alone from COVID. And you will be buried– alone. Stay home.’
Bess urged Twitter users to send her thread to any idiot ‘who posts an Instagram at the beach or a crowded park’.
‘Tell them my dad says see you later,’ she said.
On a less frustrated note, Bess also suggested that people have an advanced directive, so loved ones know what to do in the case of tricky medical situations.
‘A lot of fiancés and parents are being put in UNCOMFORTABLE situations deciding,’ she said.
She finished with one more warning.
‘Truly, before you head to the crowded beach or nail salon or bowling alley, decide if you’re a chest compressions guy or feeding tube vegetable queen,’ she said.
‘Stay home’: Bess’s warning comes after hundreds of New Yorkers flouted social distancing to spend time in open public spaces, like Central Park (pictured), over the weekend
Shocking: Many New Yorkers were seen soaking up the sunshine across the city – many without face masks
‘Healthcare workers: Share your stories (without identifiable details obviously) from the front lines. People are GALAVANTING out and about. Explain to them what they’re facing. Or worse, what they’re doing to a loved one.’
Bess continued to respond to commenters, including ‘Trump commenters’ who argued that what she said wasn’t true.
‘It’s not the f***ing flu. It’s a novel non-human virus that eats you alive,’ she said.
When a Texas college student named Justin self said that he would still go to the beach because he refused to live is life in a ‘bubble,’ Bess chastised: ‘You are condemning a person less healthy than you to this horrific death because you couldn’t avoid crowds for a couple months.’
‘Even if it doesn’t happen to you and you’re just a carrier, since you’re spreading it, it could happen to a buddy, or to a stranger who walks by you, or someone who brushes up against something you touched. This is a once in a lifetime emergency and your boredom can be lethal,’ she added.