October 30, 2020

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Outstanding health & fitness

COVID-19 survivor bikes almost 60 miles to thank healthcare employees who saved his daily life

Rick Huggins was discharged from M Health Fairview Bethesda Hospital in early Might soon after...

Rick Huggins was discharged from M Health Fairview Bethesda Hospital in early Might soon after expending 30 days on a ventilator.

ST PAUL, Minn. — The excursion from Rick Huggins’ Eden Prairie home to Bethesda Medical center in St. Paul is about 30 miles, but it truly is considerably from the avid cyclist’s most hard journey.

“COVID was terrible,” Huggins stated. “I was on a ventilator for 30 times, missing 35 pounds, experienced nine blood transfusions.”

Huggins was just one of the to start with patients admitted at M Health Fairview Bethesda Healthcare facility immediately after it reopened as the state’s only committed COVID-19 hospital in March. The 51-year-outdated, who experienced no pre-current problems, put in 50 times there right before staying discharged in May possibly. 

“There had been so lots of doctors and nurses that cared for me and saved my lifestyle,” explained. “They in no way gave up on me ever. Ever.”

Saturday Huggins embarked on his longest ride since obtaining unwell: A virtually 60-mile round excursion from his Eden Prairie residence to Bethesda, wherever he thanked the healthcare workers who saved his everyday living.

“I wanted to do this these days to rejoice. It truly is right around 100 days of recovery from COVID. It truly is not to rejoice me. I’ve experienced my celebrations every single day since. It is to celebrate all of you fellas,” he explained to the healthcare workers lined up outside Bethesda.

Huggins, who claims he nevertheless only has about 70% of his lung potential, rang Bethesda’s “discharge bell” for a 2nd time Saturday. The very first was following he was discharged from the medical center in early May well. 

“There were being several evenings in which we were like, ‘oh my gosh, make sure you. You just bought to make it via these days. You just received to make it by means of tonight,'” recalled Thea Hedstrom, a nurse at Bethesda who served care for Huggins. “Just to see Rick provides us a small extra enthusiasm. This is why we’re in this article.”

Huggins was joined on his bicycle vacation Saturday by the husband of a single of the nurses who cared for him at Bethesda. 

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