IT’S been a gruelling road to recovery for a Winnipeg mother who came down with COVID-19 a month ago.

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IT’S been a gruelling road to recovery for a Winnipeg mother who came down with COVID-19 a month ago.

Shaneen Robinson-Desjarlais, a former broadcaster and chairwoman of the Bear Clan Patrol, was readmitted to hospital this week after she had trouble breathing during a virtual doctor’s visit.

Shaneen Robinson-Desjarlais tested positive for COVID days after giving birth to her third son in April, and was re-admitted to hospital Sunday because of severe inflammation in her lungs. (Supplied)</p>

Shaneen Robinson-Desjarlais tested positive for COVID days after giving birth to her third son in April, and was re-admitted to hospital Sunday because of severe inflammation in her lungs. (Supplied)

Her recovery has been slow, she said Tuesday, speaking to the Free Press on the phone from her St. Boniface hospital room.

"One day to the next, I don’t know what to expect. I don’t know what my body’s going to do because it’s just so unpredictable with this virus," she said.

She tested positive days after giving birth to her third son in April, and spoke out about the dangers of the virus while she was being treated in hospital earlier this month, urging Manitobans to take it seriously. Robinson-Desjarlais no longer has an active case of the virus.

She was released from hospital in early May, and was one of 35 patients who was being assessed via regular video calls with doctors and nurses as part of a virtual outpatient program. She was one of 16 patients who was receiving oxygen at home, but the nurse and doctor who assessed her virtually noticed it wasn’t alleviating her shortness of breath, and asked her to get assessed in hospital.

On Sunday, she was admitted because of severe inflammation in her lungs.

Robinson-Desjarlais said she was grateful the virtual visits — during which she checked her own blood-pressure, temperature and oxygen levels — flagged the need for her to go back to the hospital. The video calls allowed her to be home with her family and newborn baby for a few weeks.

"I’m just so thankful that we have health-care professionals that are on the ball through all this because they’re able to assess me properly and able to give me the care that I needed to get better again and hopefully be on the mend again this time."

Several members of her family tested positive for the virus and her husband had to take a leave from his job to become a caregiver. It’s been a long road for all of them, Robinson-Desjarlais said, and she’s anxious about the long-term effects of the virus.

"I don’t know what the future holds, but I know it’s going to be a challenge because I’m not anywhere near 100 per cent. I’m struggling," she said.

"I just hope that people continue to take this seriously, to get vaccinated and to protect our elders and our pregnant women and our children and our vulnerable people. I did not know I was vulnerable until I got sick."

katie.may@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @thatkatiemay

Katie May

Katie May
Reporter

Katie May is a general-assignment reporter for the Free Press.