Anthony's Story

Dec 27, 2020

Anthony Best and his wife love to ballroom dance. He knows dancing isn’t just about the steps but about being in shape. He eats healthy, doesn’t smoke or drink, doesn’t take any medicine and always gets preventive screenings.

When he got sick in early March 2020, he was surprised. “I went back and forth with fever and chills and had trouble breathing,” said Anthony. “I went to an urgent care and to my doctor, and I was sent home with medicine and an inhaler, but I got worse. My wife took me to the emergency room at DMC Sinai-Grace Hospital, where they admitted me. My breathing rate was so low that I would have died if they didn’t put me on a ventilator.”

Anthony tested positive for COVID-19. For 28 days, he was in a medically induced coma on a ventilator. After coming off the ventilator, he remained hospitalized for several more days.

“In my room with no family or friends, all I could do was ask God to help me breathe,” said Anthony. “My family wouldn’t give me a phone because they didn’t want me to know that more than 30 of my friends had died from COVID-19 and both of my in-laws were hospitalized as well.”

COVID-19 ravished Anthony’s body, leaving him weak, unable to balance or walk and on oxygen support. He was transferred to the DMC’s Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan (RIM) to help rebuild his strength and stamina.

After 10 days of inpatient physical and occupational therapy, Anthony walked out of RIM without oxygen support and was reunited with his wife after 45 days.

“The staff and therapists at RIM were absolutely great,” said Anthony. “They understand how important your health is and they’re ready to do whatever it takes to get it back. Whatever I needed and whatever I asked for – they were there for me. I still have work to do, but I’m so thankful for all of them.”

For the many people who have had COVID-19, the road to recovery is just beginning. There are many long-term issues COVID-19 patients face after recovering from the virus that can range from physical to emotional. Starting a rehab program soon after recovery can help patients get back to their normal lives and activities as quickly as possible.

Click here To learn about RIM’s COVID-19 rehab recovery program.