McLeod Health nurse reunited with COVID-19 patient

Positively Carolina

FLORENCE, SC (WBTW) – McLeod Health reunited their first pregnant recovered COVID-19 patient with the nurse that treated her during that time and News13 was there to capture that emotional moment.

Shaquilla James, 26, says she was diagnosed with COVID-19 the same day she gave birth to her newborn daughter, Aubree James.

Wednesday, James reunited with RN Kelly Orton, with McLeod Regional Health. James says Orton never left her side.

“And the whole time she was there she never left me that’s why I thank God for her and she made sure I got to see my baby…Oh God,” James says.

Orton, a registered nurse for five years, says she couldn’t imagine having to not only care for a COVID-19 patient but a patient who was pregnant at the same time.

“Decided I was going to do what I had to do for my patient and we made it…didn’t we…she doesn’t remember it because she was asleep on the ventilator but I was scared that’s not something we..we don’t have pregnant or postpartum people very often,” Orton says.

James says she had a bad cough and thought it was a sinus infection until things got worse. Once she was diagnosed with the coronavirus she was only able to see her baby through pictures and FaceTime. She says baby Aubree was two weeks old before she was able to hold her.

“I can’ tell you where I got it from because I stayed in the house…washed my hands…maybe one day I went out to the store. I can’t pin point where I got it from but it is real,” James says. “I feel like God gave me a share my story…to let everyone now that this is real. Just take precaution. Just be safe,” James continued.

James and baby are doing well. Orton says she’s continuing to keep in contact with the James family.


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