Actress Iza Calzado shared the story of her battle with COVID-19 in an effort to help stop the stigma against patients.
Calzado was the virtual guest on the TV show “Magandang Buhay” where she narrated her COVID-19 experience, of getting diagnosed, and the realizations after being through a life and death situation.
“Alam mo kapag sinabi mo ngayon na Magandang Buhay iba ang pakiramdam,” Calzado said as hosts Melai Cantiveros, Karla Estrada, and Jolina Magdangal greeted her, Magandang Buhay, on the TV show video posted on April 5, 2020.
Prior to having the coronavirus disease and being hospitalized, Iza told the hosts that she had a fever, cough, and a loss of appetite for a week. At first, Iza didn’t bother to be hospitalized as she did not want to add to the burden of hospitals as she knew test kits were limited. But she eventually got herself checked in because she realized she had to take care of herself.
Iza then shared that aside from the coronavirus infection, her doctor found an infectious bacteria called Acinetobacter Baumannii in her system. Calzado found herself battling against a virus and bacteria at the same time.
“Para din sa kaalaman nila ito po ay hindi COVID. Ang COVID ay virus eh. Ito ay isang bacteria na hindi namin alam kung iyon ba ay dala-dala ko na nung pumasok ako sa ospital or it could have been something I got nung pumasok ako sa ospital. Hindi pa siya COVID. Siyempre wala pa ‘yung results mo. Hindi pa agad-agad. The minute you get to the hospital, they will start treating you for COVID. So kumbaga, day 3, nagco-COVID meds na ako. Sa totoo lang, kung COVID lang ang binattle ko, mahirap siya pero mas lumala dahil dito sa bacteria. Dalawa na ‘yung nilalabanan kasi nasa lungs ko din ‘yung bacteria,” she recounts.
She also had to take antibiotics to treat the bacteria but it triggered allergic reactions.
“Hindi nila alam is this the one causing your pneumonia or is it COVID. Naka-COVID medications na ako nung dumating ito, they had to give me matitinding antibiotics. Umabot sa point na tatlo iyon. Iyung isa, nagkaroon ako ng very bad reaction. Hindi ko naramdaman ‘yung bunganga ko, mouth, lips, tongue. Una iyong tongue,” she said.
Iza thanked people who prayed for her recovery. “I just have only God to thank and of course sa lahat po ng mga nagdasal talagang taos-puso po akong nagpapasalamat.”
Host Jolina Magdangal asked Iza of what she learned after she won the battle against COVID-19.
“Alam mo kapag nandoon ka pala talaga andaming moments, kasi may moment talaga na akala ko eto na eh. Kasi parang di ako makahinga tapos sabi ko ‘Lord ito na ba iyon?’. Iyong para ito na iyon, this is how it ends. Tapos naisip ko iyong lahat ng pinagdaanan ko sa buhay which is quite interesting as well, and I’ve been kumbaga marami na po tayong nalagpasan mga momshie. So sabi ko andami dami kong idinaan sa buhay para dito magtapos. Immediately inisip ko no, hindi ganito magtatapos ang buhay ko, hindi dito,” she narrated.
“Tapos, noon nandoon ka meron kang, totoo rin palang tatanungin mo rin ang diyos noon. Although I have experienced this iyong mga trying moments. Ito talaga clearly why me? Tapos immediately, may sumagot. Para siyang a voice in my head, ‘Why not? It had to be you. You’re being used.’ Kumbaga kung ang Diyos ang nagsasalita, ‘Anak, I’ve called you and I want to use you.’ So sabi ko na lang okay, tinanggap ko,” she said.
“If you’re faced with a life and death situation, ‘yung mga material na bagay walang maitutulong. Hindi natin puwedeng i-deny na, of course, I was being well taken cared off in a good hospital. If you think about it, sasabihin ng tao, ‘Mayaman ka and may pera ka pang ospital.’ I wish everybody lahat tayo may access doon. Wala sanang Pilipino na hindi puwedeng makapunta ng ospital at kailangan isipin na wala silang pambayad kaya hindi sila pupunta ng ospital. I wish everybody had access that kind of health care,” she said.
After her recovery, Iza shared a photo of her and her dogs on Instagram while thanking everyone and encouraging all of us to take a moment to thank God.
“Hello Everyone! It’s a brand new week and today I am grateful for my life. 🙏🏽 Most of you know what happened to me. Before I talk about it, I would like to address something. When I started getting sick, I made a comment on an IG post that was totally misconstrued. I understand how and why that happened and I am sorry if anyone was offended and felt bad about it. Please know that I would never intentionally say anything to hurt others nor celebrate anyone else’s suffering. I am a hopeful person and always try see the silver lining in every dark cloud. I am sad that you missed my heart but I also understand your sentiments.
“After 2 weeks of battling Covid 19, pneumonia and a nasty bacteria called Acinetobacter Baumannii, I am alive and for that I am truly grateful. I know that so many of you sent your love and support and I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to all of you. Please know that even if I didn’t get to read all the messages, I felt the love and good energy and that you helped me pull through one of the darkest moments of my life. Everything by God’s Grace, of course, but your prayers did so much for me. I hope in some way, I can pay it forward.
“I wish to thank all the frontliners especially my doctors and nurses in Asian Hospital for going above and beyond to make sure I live, breathe and have another shot at life. To Dr. Jorge Garcia, Kuya Joel and the family, much love and respect. Thank you. Thank you for the support from my ABSCBN family who always checked up on me and made sure that I was fine until the finish line. Salamat, Kapamilya! My deepest gratitude to my friends and family who prayed HARD and really made me feel their love and care for me especially my number 1 nurse, my husband, Ben. I could never have done this without you, my Love. We did it, by God’s Grace, we made it!
“Today, I encourage you to take a moment to thank God for your breath, thank Him for everything and everyone in your life and let us continue to pray for those who are suffering and for those who are trying their best to help those in need. Together, we can overcome all of this. Mabuhay! ❤️”
The multi-awarded actress was hospitalized on March 25. Three days later she tested positive for the disease as confirmed by her manager Noel Ferrer. It was on March 30 when she tested negative for COVID-19.
The Filipino Pride Advocate recognized the hard work of all the frontliners.
“Kahit iyong mga Grab Delivery at Food Panda, lahat sila everyone’s risking their lives. Gusto ko pong magpasalamat ng personal sa mga doktor sa lahat ng nurses” she said.
“Nothing is forgotten, I just want to tell you, every single person they went above and beyond iyong pag-alaga nila sa akin hinding-hind ko kakalimutan. Nagiiyakan kami ng ibang nurse and doctor nung sinabi ngang baka ma-ICU, may kukuha doon ng dugo ko, may nagsabi, ‘Miss Iza, ikaw si Sangre Amihan, matatalo mo ito” she shared.
Iza also appealed to everyone.
“Huwag po nating bigyan ng stigma ang COVID-19. Iyong mga tao huwag po natin pandirihan.check natin kung kamusta sila. Iparamdam natin na nandito lang tayo para sa kanila” Iza also appealed to everyone.
GMA Network’s Howie Severino also recovered from COVID-19 and is sharing his experience to help other patients battling the disease.
University of the Philippines scientists and engineers are creating ventilators and valve splitters to help COVID-19 patients breathe more easily.
SEND CHEERS to Iza Calzado as she shares her experience to help erase the stigma against COVID-19 patients.
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