Patient discharged from Groote Schuur Hospital after 40 days on high-flow oxygen | Western Cape Government

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Patient discharged from Groote Schuur Hospital after 40 days on high-flow oxygen

26 August 2020

COVID-19 patient Catherine Qonyiweyo was appreciative of her treatment received at Groote Schuur (GSH) upon her discharge on 21 August after having been on the high-flow oxygen machine (HFOM) for 40 days.

“Aunty Cathy” as she has become known to staff, was transferred to GSH from Mitchells Plain Hospital on 19 June 2020. “I felt cold and tired. I could not eat because everything was tasteless and even walking was difficult for me. My family took me to the Philippi clinic when I had shortness of breath and they immediate sent me to Mitchells Plain Hospital,” she remembers feeling at the start of her COVID-19 experience.

Dr Gordon Andley was one of the doctors who cared for Catherine during her stay at the hospital. “Aunty Cathy is a true inspiration for our whole team. She is the patient who has been on the HFOM for the longest time. Her resilience really stood out for us, she was always positive and always wanting to move forward and make progress. She was exposed to very sick patients in her ward even patients who died, but she kept on wanting to get healthy,” said Dr Andley.

Catherine (53) lives in Philippi and has three children and four grandchildren. She is a cleaner and says that what she missed the most at home aside from her lovely grandchildren whom she all missed wholeheartedly, was cleaning and tidying up the house.

At the end of that tough 63-day period she went through, she was incredibly appreciative to all the staff that helped her, especially the doctors and the nurses, for their hard work. “To be on [treatment] for 40 days was not easy, I was lying on my stomach and really [could only eat] porridge, but the staff were always there to care for me. They are all amazing and I appreciate them all so much. My wish is that God continues to give them the strength for them to perform their duties and make [a] difference,” she said.

“If there’s anything this life has taught me is that God truly exists and that he was testing my faith in him, [and] I am proud to say that my faith is now stronger than ever before. The first thing I am going to have this weekend [at home] is a traditional Xhosa celebration, Umcimbi,” she said.

Media Enquiries: 

Alaric Jacobs
Communications Officer
Groote Schuur Hospital
Cell - 083 412 5608