Paul Faraguna, the last known COVID-19 patient in South Australia, has been discharged from hospital .
Surrounded by the medical staff who saved his life, the 68-year-old left the Royal Adelaide Hospital on Thursday 21 May after being in intensive care for two months.
The Rosslyn Park man and his wife Robyn were both struck with COVID19 while on the Ruby Princess Cruise Ship in March on a dream holiday to New Zealand.
Robyn made a full recovery while her husband became so ill he was put into an induced coma for four weeks and suffered multiple organ failures.
Mr Faraguna said it is a miracle he is still here.
"The doctors were unable to say what my future would be if I survived, even suggesting that I may have brain damage and be permanently disabled," he said.
"I have been out of a coma for approximately two weeks and I don’t have any permanent damage or side-effects.
"The only challenge left is to walk normally again which should, I feel, happen in the near future due to my physiotherapy program."
Mr Faraguna said he feels incredibly fortunate to live in South Australia and is grateful for the extraordinary support of medical professionals.
"The staff and facilities are excellent and I can’t imagine that there are many places in the world that could match this standard. I will never be able to repay all of the dedicated medical staff, but I give you my heart felt thank you."
There are no active cases of COVID-19 in South Australia and 435 people have been cleared of COVID-19.
There have been four reported deaths in SA from COVID-19. SA Pathology has undertaken more than 85,000 tests for COVID-19 so far.
From Friday 22 May, all cafes and restaurants will be permitted to seat up to a total of 20 patrons (10 inside and 10 outside) as well as sell alcohol to diners.
SA Health said citizens must continue to follow measures that will help stop the spread of the virus including practicing good hygiene, keeping 1.5 metres distance from others and staying at home if unwell.
People experiencing any of the following should be tested for COVID-19:
- Fever or chills (in the absence of an alternative illness that explains these symptoms)
- An acute respiratory infection e.g. symptoms of cough, sore throat, runny nose, or shortness of breath
- Loss of smell or the alteration in the sense of taste
Step 1 of the SA roadmap for easing COVID-19 restrictions is underway. Visit www.covid-19.sa.gov.au/recovery to view the updated roadmap and Frequently Asked Questions.
For more information the general public should call SA COVID-19 Information Line on 1800 253 787 or go to www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/COVID2019.
Photo of Paul Faraguna from 9News Footage, supplied