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Utah Nurse Experiencing Worse Symptoms During Second Battle With COVID-19

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – A maternity nurse with no pre-existing conditions said she is suffering from different symptoms as she battles COVID-19 for the second time.

Heidi Belnap Nish, 41, said her symptoms this time around are more extreme than when she was diagnosed with COVID-19 back in May.

“I was shocked,” she said. “Here I am for the second time, testing positive, but not in the sense of my symptoms.”

As a health care worker, she and her family are diligent about hand washing, masks and social distancing. She said she is proof that you can get it more than once, and it can be as bad — if not worse — the second time around.

Nish said her husband got together with some friends to watch a football game before Gov. Gary Herbert’s mandate.

None of those friends showed any symptoms of COVID-19. But a few days later, Nish’s husband started to feel sick.

When he was tested, he was positive for COVID-19. A few days later, Nish started feeling sick. But unlike when she had COVID-19 in May, her symptoms weren’t the same. This time around, instead of fatigue and gastrointestinal problems, she had a horrible cough and shortness of breath, fever and a sore throat.

Nish said she is starting to feel like the worst is behind her, but she worries about those who are high-risk.

“I have family members who are high risk,” Nish said through tears. “The thought that I could possibly put them at risk, it truly matters for us to wear our masks outside the home, no matter what people think.”

As news quickly spread that a vaccine is right around the corner for health care workers, Nish said she will not hesitate to get vaccinated.

“I am definitely planning on getting it to do my part,” she said. “I don’t want to go through this again, and if I can help protect somebody else, most definitely I will be doing it.”

Nish was also adamant about thanking her coworkers on the front lines in hospitals and clinics.

“Our health care workers are working so hard right now and truly doing everything they can,” she said. “They are giving everything they can. They are exhausted emotionally, physically and mentally. If we can do our part for them, to give them a slight break, it would be the greatest thing ever.”

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