Michael Staines
Michael Staines

12.06 18 Mar 2020


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Newstalk presenter Ciara Kelly has been diagnosed with COVID-19.

The Lunchtime Live anchor was diagnosed yesterday.

Speaking this afternoon, she told her listeners she had “something personal” to tell them.

“I have the coronavirus and I have been broadcasting from the hot press for a reason,” she said.

“I have been in self-isolation since the weekend, when I became unwell with it.

“For me, it felt like a bad flu. I had a sore throat; I had a tightness and a burning in my chest and I was a bit short of breath. I was very tired and bit dizzy and a bit wobbly when I stood up and I guessed I had it.

“I got a test on Sunday. A lovely paramedic came, in full gear, to my house and swabbed my throat and my nose and last night I was informed that I have COVID-19.”

She said she has not been in contact with anyone outside her family since experiencing symptoms and she is “very hopeful” that she has not passed it on to anyone else.

She said she will continue to broadcast for as long as she is able.

“Radio connects people and it makes us feel that we are all in it together  - and now we really are because I have it," she said.

“I am dealing with it and I know it is different for different people but in my case it is like a very bad flu.

“For myself and my family, we are in quarantine now and it has come that little bit closer to home for me.”

Work

She said she is not going to let the virus stop her from "working, or from broadcasting or from talking about what we can and should do to get through this.”

She said she will do all she can do help the health service as soon as she is back fighting fit.

“When - and I mean when, not if - I am better, I have decided I am going put my stethoscope back on in some manner or form,” she said.

“I am going to find out what I can do that would be useful while continuing on air because I really do believe that is important at this moment in time.”

"We will get through it together"

In the meantime, she said she will continue to present Lunchtime Live and talk her listeners through the crisis and keep them informed of how she is doing.

“What I want to say to all of you today, yes, I have coronavirus and I am home locked up in a hot press because of it but you guys, stay safe, stay home and stop the spread as much as you can,” she said.

“Social distancing, hand washing, self-isolation and being very, very careful is important. I may have it but I am resolute that we will all get through it.

“We will get through it together and we are going to rise on the other side of this.

“I know that. I really do know it and I hope you are all with me on this because this is where we are at now.”


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