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COVID-19 patient in Kentucky went through week-long struggle to be tested

Posted at 10:48 PM, Mar 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-19 23:48:15-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- A Kentucky woman who recently tested positive for COVID-19 sat down (via Facetime) with WLEX to talk about how difficult it was to convince doctors to test her for the illness caused by the new coronavirus.

Fatima Warren says it all started with soreness, but she thought she just needed to rest. Days later, she developed fever and still was in a lot of pain.

"To touch my ear like that, like I couldn't do this and not be in pain. I had so, the bones in my face hurt, like aches. Everything in my body just hurt," said Warren.

Warren, a speech pathologist in Lexington, says she went to the University of Kentucky emergency room and when all other tests came back negative, she asked if she could be tested for COVID-19. It was the start of week-long struggle to get tested. She reached out to Baptist Health, the state hotline and the health department and was told she didn't qualify to be tested.

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Thankfully, Warren decided to self-isolate because she worried about infecting her 87-year-old grandmother.

"...If I'm positive, God, I want my grandmother to be healthy, you know, at the end of the day. They didn't even take that into consideration," said Warren.

A local physician agreed to test her and it came back positive for the novel coronavirus. Warren is grateful that she decided to isolate and that her grandmother is healthy, but she worries about test availability for others and that people could be carrying the novel coronavirus around other vulnerable people.

This story was originally published by Katherine Collins and Melissa Ratliff at WLEX.