As the coronavirus continues to spread inside China, a resident in the epicenter of the outbreak told The Epoch Times about her father being rejected from the hospital despite having symptoms similar to the virus.
The central Chinese city of Wuhan first reported an outbreak of a viral pneumonia on Dec. 31, 2019. Authorities later traced the disease to a new strain of coronavirus, which has since spread quickly to all provinces and regions of China.
Wuhan and other 16 cities in Hubei Province are now under some form of quarantine.
The woman wishes to remain anonymous. Her family is from a rural area and makes a living as street vendors in the Hankou district of Wuhan. The lady, her husband, and her father live together in a rented apartment in Hankou.
“We never went to Huanan Seafood Market,” the woman said. Authorities have linked the outbreak to the market, where wild game is also sold.
“About one week ago, my father had a fever. He treated it as a normal fever in the beginning and had some fever medicines that a clinic gave him,” she said.
On Jan. 24, her father’s condition became worse. “My husband sent him to the Wuhan Union Hospital, but was rejected by the hospital [due to lack of space]. Then they went to the No. 5 Hospital. That hospital treated him temporarily but didn’t have a hospital bed for further treatment,” she explained. No facilities officially diagnosed him for the coronavirus.
They had no choice but to take the father back home. In the following three days, the father visited the No. 5 Hospital for several injection treatments and stayed at home.
But the situation became severe on Jan. 28. “My husband begged the doctors to receive him at the hospital. But the hospital couldn’t arrange a bed for him, no matter how much money we’d like to pay,” she said.
Her father passed away that night while waiting in line for treatment at the hospital.
Her husband tended to her father while the latter was isolated at home.
Recently, her husband began exhibiting similar symptoms. “We [the couple] are scared,” she said.
The daughter tried to buy disinfectants for her home. But all shops were out of supplies and couldn’t find any available online stores either.
“After my father passed away, the hospital and the community didn’t send anybody to our apartment to disinfect my father’s room,” she said. “We don’t know what we can do.”
Although the central government has previously said all coronavirus patients can be treated free of charge, her family had to pay for all of her father’s medical costs.
Furthermore, the hospital did not diagnose the father’s disease, which means authorities did not count the father as a coronavirus case.
The woman said her husband has not gone to the hospital yet. She said hospitals are currently at capacity; they would need to wait for a long time to receive treatment.
Luo Ya contributed to this report.