Ghanaian Music Producer, Hammer, is now among the many who were able to stand tall after a fierce battle with the Covid-19 pandemic.
After going through the most intense one month of his life on the hospital bed trying to grasp oxygen to stay alive, Hammer, born Edward Nana Poku Osei has finally shared his ordeal.
Taking to his social media platform, the 44-year-old revealed that he was admitted at the Bemuah Royal Hospital located at East Legon after experiencing severe fever for days.
According to Hammer, his nightmare started off as malaria but after several failed attempts to get better, he decided to visit his family hospital located at East Legon.
After running some tests, he was diagnosed with malaria and typhoid by the doctor. But a word from a nurse suggested that he was suffering from something else rather than what he was told.
“So a month ago, I had malaria in Ghana terms. I treated it with Coartem (a malaria drug) for three days, as I should and I started feeling more feverish. So I went back to the hospital because I wanted to test for malaria. I tested for malaria and typhoid and they saw some malaria and typhoid in my system so the doctor gave me medicine. But then the nurse, who is a fan saw my numbers and said ‘I don’t know much, I’m not the doctor but the numbers I’m looking at, your malaria and typhoid levels are insignificant. When people get numbers like these we don’t even treat them.’”
He, however, came home to follow the directives of the doctor. He noted that things didn’t go well as his health kept deteriorating.
“I came home and administered another three days of my medicine. Then the situation deteriorated. It became something crazy. I couldn’t breathe. There was not enough air in the room. AC and everything was on but I had to come outside my house to breathe. I wasn’t coughing. It was my cook who said ‘dad, you are sick. This is serious,’” he said.
He was later rushed to the hospital in an ambulance after an uber driver declined to transport him due to the severity of the matter.
Upon arrival at the hospital, Hammer explained that he was immediately treated for Covid-19 because his saturation level was alarming.
“As soon as I got there, they saw that my saturation wasn’t good at all. It was 80 and getting below that. It was very bad. Immediately, they started treatment for Covid-19 without even testing. I started coughing for the first time, everything started changing. They summoned the laboratory to the hospital to test me. I couldn’t breathe, it felt like dumbbells were on my chest. (I have really suffered, God).
“It came back positive for the third wave of Covid-19, full-blown and that began my ordeal.”
During his one month stay at the hospital, the 44-year-old survivor said he had an encounter with death. In his narration, Hammer stated that he had panic attacks and had an unbearable experience.
For him, difficulty in breathing among others were signs that he was not going to make it. But when he was able to gather a little strength, he documented his experience.
“I actually thought I was going to die so I started doing a diary of what I was going through, just ten seconds videos. I saw death on a few occasions. My panic attacks in the night, I thought I was going. I was screaming with the nurses trying to restrain me. I was screaming ‘I am not ready, no. I can’t go’. I felt the life leaving me and I was fighting.
“I think it was 1 am, I was suffering. The bell that calls the nurses wasn’t working and so I really thought I was going to go. My breathing became a problem. I was suffering, I had a panic attack. It was 1 am and I was calling the nurse, I think I actually shed a tear because I was scared.”
“I was afraid, actually, I was afraid and I thought I was going to go,” he stressed.
According to Hammer, following his encounter, he realised there is little education on Covid-19. He bemoaned the lack of stories supposed to be shared by survivors in order to inform members of the public that the virus is real.
He was, however, quick to add that such persons cannot be blamed entirely since society stigmatizes people who fall prey to the virus.
“I have been in the battle of my life. I have faced an adversary that I have never faced as long as I’ve lived. I’ve been to hell and back basically. It is important that people know what lurks around our neighbourhoods, our offices, our daily endeavours.
“I noticed that the survivors of Covid-19 for the fear of stigmatisation are quiet. There is not enough education to let people understand anything once you are cleared and you have tested negative like I was. I tested negative twice after my recovery. Once you are clear, it is okay. You just have to adhere to the protocols. People need to realize that they have to stop branding the Covid-19 survivors.
“I think that is why everybody is quiet and so the general population keeps on saying ‘ this thing is it real? I don’t know anyone who has contracted it’. Those who died from Covid-19, even their families for the fear of being stigmatized are not admitting that these people died of Covid-19. There is no education, people would have taken these things seriously if they knew that there are survivors. People who walk among them and have gone through this and survived.”
Hammer also used the platform to appreciate all who stood by his side in times of despair. The few people he mentioned included Sarkodie, Jay Q, Reggie and Bollie.
“These were the people who noticed I wasn’t posting anything on Facebook and on Instagram. So they started investigating. It is only a few people who would notice your absence. I wanted to keep it very quiet.
Jay Q noticed my absence and started making calls and finally found out that I was sick. Big ups Jay Q. Reggie ‘n’ Bollie, both of them also investigated and found out I was sick.
“Nana Kwame Bediako, thank you for the support and being there throughout till I left the hospital. Big up to Sarkodie, in the midst of his No Pressure tour, he was constantly on the phone with me,” he said.