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COVID-19 Survivors Tell Their Stories, Urge The Public Take The Virus Seriously

COVID-19 Survivor Dr. Devandra Amin
Stephanie Colombini
WUSF Public Media
Dr. Devandra Amin of Clearwater is one of the Tampa Bay residents interviewed for Stephanie Colombini's series. He contracted the virus in late March, when scientists and physicians knew very little about how to treat it. He recovered, and has helped care for COVID-19 patients ever since.

This week, Florida Matters shares the stories of three Tampa Bay residents who contracted and survived COVID-19. Their stories are part of a larger series airing this week on WUSF.

More than 700,000 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Florida since March. And for those who have recovered, the illness has changed their lives forever.

Health News Florida reporter Stephanie Colombini talked with several people about what it was like to have COVID-19 and you’ll hear those stories all week on WUSF.

We bring you three of those stories on this week's Florida Matters.

You'll hear from Dr. Devandra Amin of Clearwater, Ambyr Lix of Land O'Lakes and Mary Ann Shea of Sarasota.

Surviving COVID-19: Critical Care Doctor Lands In His Own ICU
Surviving COVID-19: Pasco Woman Suspects GI Damage Linked To Virus
Surviving COVID-19: Sarasota Senior 'Furious' With Trump, DeSantis For Virus Response

Host Bradley George also spoke with Colombini about her experiences reporting the series.

"I was surprised at how open people were. We got great responses," Colombini said. "I think people really want to tell their stories, what I heard from everybody was 'I just feel strongly about my experience out there so that other people can learn from it.' Because there is this concern that some in the community don't take this pandemic seriously."

After talking to six Tampa Bay residents for the series, Colombini said she'd like to know more about how contact tracing is being conducted, among other issues.

"It doesn't seem like much was done at all (for the people she interviewed) and that's supposed to be a critical element of curbing outbreaks," she said. "And it didn't seem like anyone (her interviewees) had a clue and they were hanging to guess and put the pieces together of who might have infected them."

You can listen to the full conversation with Colombini and hear three of her Surviving COVID-19 audio postcards above.

Hi there! I’m Dinorah Prevost and I’m the producer of Florida Matters, WUSF's weekly public affairs show. That basically means that I plan, record and edit the interviews we feature on the show.
I cover health care for WUSF and the statewide journalism collaborative Health News Florida. I’m passionate about highlighting community efforts to improve the quality of care in our state and make it more accessible to all Floridians. I’m also committed to holding those in power accountable when they fail to prioritize the health needs of the people they serve.
Bradley George was a Morning Edition host and reporter at WUSF until March 2022.
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