Southend councillor in self isolation after getting coronavirus symptoms

A Southend councillor has announced he will be spending seven days in self-isolation to overcome flu-like symptoms which bear similarities to coronavirus.

Councillor Martin Terry (Ind) put himself into self-isolation on Monday on the advice of his doctor.

Cllr Terry said it came after he developed a sore throat but since then the illness has worsened.

“I first had a mild sore throat which became really bad last weekend,” he said.

“I am generally a fit and healthy person, but I went out for a walk on Sunday with my partner and actually almost fainted.

“I felt unwell, I was hot, and I struggled to make it home.

“Once I was back, I laid down for a while and decided that if I didn’t feel better on the Monday I would avoid work and call my doctor.

“When I did describe the symptoms to the doctor the following day, which was sort of a cold, a bad throat and feeling lightheaded, she immediately told me I need to self-isolate.”

The councillor has now been in isolation for four days and has no idea whether what he has is coronavirus, flu or something else entirely.

“I honestly don’t know what this is,” Mr Terry continued.

“Coronavirus seems to display itself in different people in different ways, I’ve had a bad throat and the key thing has been a thumping headache. The doctor has said I have a virus but I can’t go there for a test as they aren’t doing them anymore.

“Not being able to have a test is a difficulty because it could well be another serious ailment, but I’ve been told to stay at home.

“For all I know I could have a different, serious issue and yet I am going to be sitting here for a week not knowing what it is.

“But I would still say 100 per cent follow the advice that is being given. It is not so much people like me who would be in significant danger but those with underlying health conditions be it diabetes or a lung condition.

“You have to think of everyone else, no matter how you feel, you need to stay away from people as it appears this virus displays itself differently in everyone.”

The NHS is advising people to self-isolate if you have any symptoms of coronavirus, including a new and continuous cough or a high temperature.

If you live with someone with the symptoms you will also need to stay home for 14 days.

There are currently 34 confirmed cases of coronavirus across the county and 2,626 in the UK but on Tuesday the government’s top scientific officer warned up to up to 55,000 people could be infected.

Steve Shaw

Local Democracy Reporter