Recovered Covid patient has highest praise for Tullamore hospital

PHOTO: Ollie Doyle back at home in Kildare, with his wife Anne.

Ollie Doyle from Kildare town says he didn’t even know there was a hospital in Tullamore till he was sent there as a Covid-19 patient.

Having been treated there and now recovering at home, Ollie has the highest praise for the staff who cared for him.

"I can tell you this – I can’t give enough of praise. I never met the like of them in all my life," Ollie said on Midlands Today on Midlands 103.

Ollie told presenter Will Faulkner that he had prostrate cancer, which he found relatively manageable.

"Then it was my lungs, and I went to hell and back. It was tough, I can tell you that."

Ollie spent just over eight weeks in intensive care as a Covid patient, much of it on a ventilator, and says he doesn’t remember much, but he does remember coming out of that period of his care.

"When I woke up in Tullamore, sure I thought I was in a hotel. It’s a fantastic hospital.

"And then when I saw the nurses, I said ‘in the name of God, where am I?’.

"I hope no one gets it [Covid-19], because if they do, they’ll never forget it."

Ollie is recovering well at home in Kildare, his daughter Orla told the Offaly Independent, but the early stages were tough.

Ollie said: "When I got my voice back, I couldn’t hold the phone up to my ear. I had to put it on the speaker and put it on the bed, because I didn’t have the energy to hold the phone.

"It was the same with taking a drink. I had to get someone to open the bottle. I had to be lifted to the toilet and lifted back into the bed.

"They had to feed me – it was horrendous."

Once he got out of hospital, Ollie said he had a homecoming that he’ll never forget as long as he lives.

"When I came to the town, they had a big sign across the road at Cunningham’s, ‘Welcome home Ollie’, and I said to Anne, ‘what’s going on?’, because I hadn’t a clue.

"When we turned down the Station Road, there was a piper leading me down into Dara Park. Well there were hundreds of people.

"I never saw anything like it. I never saw as many people in Kildare in all my life!

"I could not believe it, and then Johnny Peters singing the Curragh of Kildare. I don’t think I’ll ever see the like of it again."