Updated: February 6, 2021 10:48:49 am
While people around the world have been grappling with the novel coronavirus, a British teen in a coma, woke up to a new world without any idea about the pandemic. However, he couldn’t escape it totally as he was infected twice.
Joseph Flavill recently woke up from a 10-month long coma with no knowledge of the devastating pandemic while battling a Severe Traumatic Brain Injury. Flavill, 19, was hit by a car on March 1, 2020 — three weeks before the first lockdown and remained in hospital since.
He finally woke up earlier this week and has begun to respond to simple commands and stimulation, the family said. According to a Facebook page documenting his recovery, he is slowly starting to emerge from the coma into a “minimally conscious state.”
His aunt Sally Flavill Smith told BBC News that his waking up was something “we’ve been hoping for every day during lockdown”.
Due to pandemic restrictions, his family wasn’t allowed to visit him and was only allowed to communicate virtually. According to Staffordshire Live, his mother, Sharon Priestley, was able to visit on his 19th birthday in December but had to remain at a distance.
“We also don’t know how much he understands as his accident was before the first lockdown and it’s almost like he has slept through the whole pandemic,” his aunt told the news outlet.
Before the accident, he was a senior in high school with a passion for sports and music, and had been set to receive a gold Duke of Edinburgh award, a youth achievement award, in May 2020, according to a website set up for donations for his treatment. However, the accident changed it all.
“I just don’t know where to start with it. A year ago, if someone had told me what was going to happen over the last year, I don’t think I would have believed it. I’ve got no idea how Joseph’s going to come to understand what we’ve all been through.” his aunt told The Guardian.
The family said they have tried to make him understand over video calls that they’re unable to be with him in person due to coronavirus restrictions, but are unsure if he can understand it fully. As a long road to his recovery is still ahead, they slowly want to make him know about the new normal.
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