Covid survivor spends 30 days in Fort Sanders ICU

Jay FitzOur Town Health, Union

At the beginning of 2020, Sandra Savage couldn’t have predicted the whirlwind she was about to experience.


The Union County resident works as a dialysis nurse in Knox County, aiding patients with renal replacement therapy.

Sandra Savage

As the pandemic progressed, despite her best efforts she contracted COVID-19 in July. Suddenly roles were reversed, and the nurse became the patient. Her symptoms started with a headache, muscle aches and a low-grade fever. Within a few days Savage had shortness of breath and trouble breathing, and sought care at Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center’s emergency room.

She was admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU), and spent more than 30 days there battling the virus.

She was weak when she went home and still easily winded, but had resources to get oxygen and physical therapy, and had a lot of family support from her husband and high school-aged son. Her parents live close by. “The support of my family is everything,” she says. “I don’t know where I would be.”

For a detailed story of Savage’s treatment and recovery, read here: Covenant Health news

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