Transplant +563: “Underlying medical condition”

The world has changed dramatically since I last wrote here. The phrases “social distancing”, “self-isolation” and “shielding” are now common currency.

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My view of the 2012 Paralympics opening ceremony. Long before social distancing.

I’ve been working from home since March 11th as the company I work for closed its offices across the world. In normal circumstances I hate working from home.

On the 12th I suspended my ‘walk all over cancer’ challenge as I became increasingly concerned about the impact of exposure to Covid-19.

The last time I left home was on the 16th. I went to have a vaccination as part of my recovery from my stem cell transplant. The scenes outside the doctor’s surgery at 0800 that morning were disturbing. Everyone without an appointment was firmly and politely turned away at the door.

My ‘extremely vulnerable’ text from the NHS Coronavirus service arrived on the 23rd, followed by a letter from my GP on the 24th. I’m taking their warnings and advice seriously.

I have one wish. That the blasé phrase used to describe the majority of deaths from Covid-19 – “the patient had an underlying medical condition” – is binned from future media reports. It lulls the well into a false sense of security and devalues the lives of those who are less fortunate. Any and all deaths from this virus are a tragedy, and the words used to report them matter.

 

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