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  • Doug Tjapkes

No presidential treatment for this COVID patient!

Louie isn’t his real name. Louie is one of our whistle-blowers in the Muskegon Correctional Facility, so we’re protecting his identity. Louie managed to avoid the coronavirus for a while, but in that particular prison it became almost impossible. His story. I started getting a bad sore throat last week. The sore throat turned into a horrible (worst I ever had) bronchial infection. It affected my mind in such a way that extreme anxiety set in. I would sweat profusely. My heart would race. I could not breathe. I would repeatedly hyperventilate. I thought I was either having a heart attack or a stroke. I began to have panic attacks. I couldn't sleep for fear of dying. I didn't sleep for 3 days. I felt extremely light headed and claustrophobic, to near insanity. There came a time where I made my peace with God and just waited for the death which did not come. I begged the CO's for help. I was told to wait for a nurse to make their rounds. The first nurse instructed me to kite mental health...she thought I was just suffering from a panic attack. The second nurse barely spoke English, and didn't even report my condition to anyone. I had to chase down a male nurse, and explained that I needed help. I never heard anything back from him. I sent out 2 kites, one to mental health and one to healthcare, begging for help. I sent those kites 4 days ago and still haven't heard anything back from either of them. I have not heard from anyone period. They haven't even been by to check on me. I am fortunate that the Lord spared me. I am sore all over. Friday afternoon I finally fell asleep from sheer exhaustion. The claustrophobic feelings and anxiety let up quite a bit, and the other symptoms began to let up as well. The fever finally broke last night. I am much better today (9 days from when it started). I was a very healthy person. I finished 2nd on the compound last year in the power-lifting competition at 53 years old. I work out 4x a week. I don't say this to toot my own horn. I say this to show how badly it affected a very healthy individual. How much worse would the older and less active guys have it? On the heels of national news coverage this week, it seemed appropriate to show the contrast between presidential treatment for the virus, i.e. helicopter transportation to a major hospital, a team of specialists, and extensive medication including experimental drugs. Not quite the same for a hurting, ailing, lonely inmate in the Michigan prison system. ...remember those in prison as if you were together with them. Hebrews 13:3

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