Woman with cystic fibrosis: 'The coronavirus absolutely terrifies me'

A woman who has cystic fibrosis says the coronavirus "absolutely terrifies" her. Sasha Delaney li...
Jack Quann
Jack Quann

10.55 2 Apr 2020

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Woman with cystic fibrosis: 'T...

Woman with cystic fibrosis: 'The coronavirus absolutely terrifies me'

Jack Quann
Jack Quann

10.55 2 Apr 2020

Share this article

A woman who has cystic fibrosis says the coronavirus "absolutely terrifies" her.

Sasha Delaney lives in Kildare but works as a special needs assistant at a school in Dublin city.

She has been in isolation with her boyfriend since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.


Her daily routine consists of an early start to ensure she gets her exercises done.

She told Pat Kenny: "I'm normally up at about 5.40 in the morning in order to get chest clearance physio done, nebulisers done, inhalers done.

"I also have cystic fibrosis-related diabetes so I have to make sure I have a good breakfast, I have to try and make sure that I have all my medications in my bag for the day."

"I'm usually out the door for about 6.45 to get into Dublin city centre for about 8.20 and then I do a full work day - obviously in school which I love, I'm actually very lucky I love my job".

cystic fibrosis Image via @Scarlett_Fro on Twitter

"Then I try to get back - get home here at about 5/5.30 - I try to get to the gym at least three or four days a week, because exercise with cystic fibrosis is absolutely crucial to keep my lungs in the best health I can keep them".

But she says all this has been put on hold, on the advice of her GP.

"I rang her on the Tuesday and just asked... when is my cut-off point - is it when we hit 200 cases in Ireland, 300 cases - when should I be concerned?

"And on the phone she basically said: 'What are you still doing in work? One community infection is too many, get out of there'.

"I've been in my house since that very day.

"I do some workouts, I've used my back garden a few times... I'm trying to do as many tailored workouts as I can in my house.

"A lot of press-ups on my kitchen table and kitchen chairs is what's going on".

But Sasha says COVID-19 "absolutely terrifies me".

"The very fact this is a respiratory illness and it's causing such severe pneumonia is the terrifying part"

"I've been unfortunate  enough to have pneumonia once or twice... but to see the fact that the fatality rate among people with underlying conditions is quite severe - and the fact that so many people are needing to be ventilated and being put into ICU is really quite terrifying."

"The reality is there'd be very slim chances of me getting through it if I got to that point that I needed to be hosiptalised with it".

Sasha says she and her boyfriend  are managing, but there is a rigorous processes to everything.

"We had a very frank conversation... we had come to conclusion that if it was the case that he had to still go to work or we needed him to go in and out to the shops, he would just have to move out.

"There's absolutely zero point Pat of me sitting in this house and staring at the four walls if there is someone coming in and out all the time".

She says they are relying on neighbours, friends and slow online shopping.

"It takes a good 40 minutes to get everything into the house - literally we have to wipe down the shopping bag, sterilise the handles and then take each individual thing out one by one, out of packets, out of boxes [and] sterilise them.

"All the fruit and vegetables or anything that's loose has to go straight into the sink and they get absolutely scrubbed".

She added: "I really think this is going to have a lasting effect - I think our whole way of life after this will definitely change".

"There's really no point in sitting and feeling sorry for myself... I saw a great thing online the other day that says: You're not suck at home, you're safe at home".

Woman with cystic fibrosis: 'The coronavirus absolutely terrifies me'

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Meanwhile Cystic Fibrosis Ireland has announced that public collections for its national awareness day on Friday April 10th have been cancelled.

Instead it is moving to a virtual campaign where people can donate online.

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Coronavirus Cystic Fibrosis Kildare Living With Cystic Fibrosis Pat Kenny Sasha Delaney

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