BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — When a local teen got sick with COVID-19 in October, she never imagined she’d be in a fight for her life.
Fortunately, Faith Carter sought treatment at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital, where equipment purchased through CMN funds helped save her life.
Being able to walk around the park is something Faith Carter doesn’t take for granted. Less than two months ago, this 17-year-old was struggling just to breathe.
“I have really bad asthma so every single year as soon as the weather changes I catch a cold, it’s inevitable,” said Faith Carter, 17. “We were treating it at home and it got worse and worse and it got to the point literally where I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t breathe.”
Faith, who also has diabetes, was rushed to Lauren Small Children’s Center and the pediatric ER where she was diagnosed with COVID pneumonia.
“Like any respiratory virus covid attacks the lungs first and it causes copious amounts of secretions like drowning in their own secretions, it is really hard for a child to breathe,” said Liz Ruiz, a R.N. at BMH.
“She told me that night would decide whether I was going to be on a ventilator the next day, and she said when you’re on the ventilator you’re not breathing on your own and that absolutely terrified me,” Faith said.
Faith came close to being intubated several times. Fortunately it didn’t happen, but she had other life-threatening complications.
“She went into a-fib which had caused her heart to pump slowly and the rate became slow and irregular,” Ruiz said. “We had to give her IV fluids and drips and this med infusion pump also donated by CMN.”
Faith spent 20 days in the pediatric intensive care unit without her mother after she too tested positive for COVID-19. But, she was being cared for here at home, instead of in a hospital far from home.
“I started crying,” Faith said. “I was literally terrified, that was one of the scariest experiences of my life.”
But, the nurses and doctors at Lauren Small Children’s Center using equipment purchased through CMN funds you have generously donated, helped Faith recover, and in early November she was able to go home.
“The care there is absolutely amazing, not just the nurses, the doctors, everyone. I told them maybe in 6 months to a year I’m going to come back and visit everybody,” Faith said.
Because of her experience, Faith now wants to be a child care life specialist to be there for other kids who are hospitalized.
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