Devoted couple survive coronavirus after NHS staff move their beds side by side in hospital

  • Video credit: University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust.

A husband and wife who have been married for 36 years were treated side by side after both being taken into hospital with coronavirus.

Keith and Marie Moulson, from Swadlincote, were admitted within 24 hours of each other to Royal Derby Hospital. 

“I started to feel unwell between Christmas and New Year but didn’t think it was anything serious, but then I started to get worse. I was really struggling to eat and my breathing started to deteriorate," said Marie.

“There was one point when I just wasn’t making sense, which is when Keith knew something was seriously wrong.

Keith said: “When Marie started to get worse I called 111 and she was then admitted to hospital.

“The following day, getting out of bed was just such an effort; I felt terrible. The best way I can describe how I felt originally was like I had the worst flu I’ve ever had.”

The pair were admitted to the High Dependency Unit and given airway assistance to help their breathing. 

When the ward team realised Keith and Marie were married, they made special arrangements for them to be in beds next to each other, something which the couple found very reassuring.

Marie added: “If I wanted to know if Keith was okay, I could muster the strength to shout to him and check on him.

“Being kept together made a very scary process a lot easier as it has been a very frightening time. I would never have expected to share an experience like this together, especially to this degree of severity.”

Keith and Marie have since returned home, where they continue their recovery. 

Marie said: “I’ve never been through anything like this. I realised just how ill I was when the staff were asking me if I had plans in place should I not recover. That’s when I really thought; I’m in trouble here.

“We’re feeling much better now, but it’s still a long road to recovery. There are people out there who think that this is all a conspiracy theory. To those people I say; I hope you never see it. It is frightening and it is hard work.

“I would never wish to see anyone in this situation, not even my worst enemy. I would never want to see anyone on the receiving end of this virus because it is horrible.”

Keith added his thanks for the staff for their care during his and his wife’s stay at the hospital: 

“The staff have been fantastic and I can’t thank them all enough. Everyone from the ward staff to the paramedics to the cleaners – we just want to say thank you a thousand times.

“The way that everything’s been done and the care that’s been afforded to us has been superb. They have kept us informed at every stage, answered all of our questions and kept us together as much as has been possible.”

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