‘It can be lonely’: Coronavirus patient in quarantine at Royal Hallamshire speaks out

He doesn’t even feel ill

A coronavirus victim in Sheffield has spoken out about his experiences and is remaining optimistic from his quarantine in Royal Hallamshire hospital.

One of two people in Sheff with the virus, 26-year-old pianist Joel Rawlins said: “I don’t feel ill. In fact, one of the nurses said I’m probably the well-est patient she’s ever worked with.”

His interview comes amid cases in the UK jumping to 115 and corona-chaos in Italy, where all schools have been shutdown for ten days and sporting events are being played behind closed doors.

Despite this, Joel is remaining calm and has praised the “incredible” NHS. He said: “They are constantly checking up on me. They have even let me order take out while I’m here!”

Donning a coronavirus t-shirt in his hospital bed, Joel has told people not to be frightened. He said: “There is no need to be scared.

“The virus isn’t deadly – just stay safe, keep washing your hands and report yourself if you show any symptoms.”

Joel Rawlins

Joel was one of the passengers on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan where 691 passengers, including the first Brit to die from the illness, caught COVID-19. Him and one other were taken to Royal Hallamshire for treatment last week.

He talked of the moment he was rushed back to the UK after being extradited from the ship, and of the support he has had since his quarantine.

He said: “From the bottom of my heart, I’d like to sincerely thank every single one of the hundreds of friends and family both in the UK and around the world for their constant thoughts and prayers throughout this very unique situation.

“You tend to get a little lonely, so calling people has kept me feeling sane. I’ve also spent a lot of time on YouTube and Netflix, learnt some jazz and written some music.

“I don’t want anyone to worry about me. I’m doing absolutely fine and will be out before you know it. I’ve occupied my time quite well.”