| 8.2°C Dublin

Skier who returned with virus showed no symptoms

 

Close

Advice: Solicitor Donal O'Sullivan said people should listen to the HSE

Advice: Solicitor Donal O'Sullivan said people should listen to the HSE

Advice: Solicitor Donal O'Sullivan said people should listen to the HSE

A solicitor who was one of the first people in Ireland to be diagnosed with coronavirus says he never developed a single symptom of the disease.

Donal O'Sullivan, from Arklow, Co Wicklow, returned to work on Thursday after a week in the Mater Hospital and another week isolating at home.

The virus has played havoc with his family and working life, as his wife, a local GP, their two young daughters and all of his work colleagues also had to go into isolation for a fortnight.

"But the biggest stress I had wasn't the condition, it was the rumour mill, the speculation around my immediate family and more distant members," he said.

"People were being accused of having this thing and stuff was being put out on WhatsApp and Facebook and some hugely irresponsible things were being said that created an awful lot of unnecessary panic and fear."

Bizarrely, the 52-year-old former Fine Gael councillor had no symptoms of coronavirus and neither did any of the other six people who travelled with him and also tested positive.

They were among a group of 18 who travelled to Italy on a skiing holiday in February. It was only when one of their group, a nurse who lives in Northern Ireland, insisted on being tested as a precaution and turned out to be positive that the others were checked.

Mr O'Sullivan said the fact he was well throughout made him worry about the number of undetected infections that people may be unwittingly spreading.

"The whole Government mantra in relation to social distancing, following the rules, following the guidance, is absolutely critical because we are in a very dangerous phase now," he told East Coast Radio.

He also urged people to follow only reputable health advice: "Listen to the HSE. There's a lot of stuff out there.

"One piece of 'advice' was to stick a hairdryer up your nose for 10 minutes. That's not a good idea."

Irish Independent