Health care workers on the front line of the coronavirus pandemic likely have a greater risk of contracting the disease. Although there are no tallies of just how many become infected, one nurse who died of the virus recorded a daily video diary in hopes of documenting just how serious it can be.
Pamela Orlando, who worked at the Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, New Jersey recorded her condition each day from home until her symptoms took a turn for the worse and she was admitted to the hospital. She then continued to record the videos at the hospital for the next three weeks before her death.
"I think my mother did it to show people that this is serious and we need to be taking this more serious," her son told Inside Edition.
At first, Orlando seemed to be able to deal with the virus on her own. "I'm not going to the ER. I'm going to manage my symptoms at home," she said in an early video.
But the symptoms, including back pain, a seemingly unbreakable fever and a terrible cough, only got worse. When she was finally taken to the hospital, the 56-year-old said she "couldn't even move without being short of breath."
She continued recording the videos even after she reached the point where she could no longer speak. Her sons, Reid and Ryan, visited her for one final farewell. Only then did they find the videos on their mom's phone.
"There videos are very difficult for me and my brother to see, but they needed to go out there because that's what my mother wanted," her son said.
A GoFundMe page set up in Orlando's honor raised over $6,000 for Project N-95, a fundraiser to get critical protective gear for health care workers on the front lines of COVID-19.