‘I had this overwhelming fear’ – Multiple members of Bronx family deal with COVID-19
A Bronx family’s battle with COVID-19 is leaving what seems to be lasting scars – both physically and mentally.
The family says that multiple family members contracted the virus.
“I just had this overwhelming fear that something bad would happen to me, something bad would happen to my family,” says Destiny Vega.
Melissa Castro says that the family has been battling the illness for more than a month.
“Even though we feel better, this thing really hasn’t left our bodies. Like, our lungs are still recuperating,” Castro says.
Castro says that her 81-year-old grandfather Fernando Bosch was not able to recover from the virus. He died within days at Lincoln Hospital. Castro’s grandmother was able to recover, even with other health issues.
“They were married for 54 years, so now she has this new reality,” Castro says.
Castro says that a funeral home just agreed to pick up her grandfather’s body after it was in the morgue for more than a week.
“Not only could we not have been there for my grandfather and he died alone in the hospital, but as a family, we haven’t been able to be there for each other. So, all we can do it get on the phone on FaceTime and cry with each other,” she says.
Castro also says that her 60-year-old mother is a resident of ArchCare’s St. Vincent de Paul nursing home. She says that her mother also had a health scare.
“My mom was exhibiting a fewer – that, that was my breaking point,” Castro says.
Castro’s mother tested negative for the virus. A letter sent home explained that a lack of protective equipment in ArchCare’s nursing homes means that 13 people have died from the virus at the St. Vincent de Paul home as of Saturday.
ArchCare spokesman Jon Goldberg says that the facility has received some donations and currently has a week’s supply of PPE. But he says that caregivers may also be forced to reuse equipment – adhering to guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Goldberg also says that ArchCare’s efforts to get more equipment have been hurt by both fraudulent suppliers and insufficient city deliveries.