State Rep. Randy Fine released from hospital following weekslong battle with COVID-19

Fine: 'It ain't the flu'

Randy Fine tested positive for COVID-19. (Florida Today)

PALM BAY, Fla. – After spending several days in the hospital and weeks battling the novel coronavirus, Rep. Randy Fine (R-Palm Bay) is back home.

Fine provided an update on his health in a Facebook Live video Friday morning, during which he thanked the health care workers who he says made his homecoming possible.

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“I would start by saying that I am extraordinarily grateful to the miracle workers at Health First and Holmes Regional Medical Center who probably saved my life,” Fine said. “I mean, I was in pretty serious shape on Sunday and I could’ve gotten a lot worse and the staff there was unbelievable.”

I’m home from the hospital! Live with COVID, Day 18+

Posted by State Representative Randy Fine on Friday, August 7, 2020

After five nights at Holmes Regional Medical Center, Fine was released Friday morning, 18 days after he first tested positive for COVID-19.

Fine said his wife tested positive the day before him, one week after they were both exposed to someone who had the virus. In the video, Fine said he first tested negative for COVID-19 then got tested again because he started not feeling well and received positive results.

Fine was sick at home for 10-12 days before going to the emergency room on Sunday to get an X-ray because he thought he had pneumonia. He said it turned out to be COVID-related pneumonia covering 30% of his lungs and his blood oxygen and was “critically low.”

In the live update, Fine said he still feels weak and a bit shaky but doesn’t feel sick. He does, however, have some long-term damage from his battle with the coronavirus.

“What I know is my lungs are damaged and they’re going to be damaged for weeks if not months, if not -- potentially to some degree -- forever,” Fine said.

Fine said it’s too soon to know how lasting the impacts will be on his health but that he will be meeting with lung doctors for the foreseeable future to monitor the situation.

The politician said he learned the hard way that COVID-19 is different from the flu because of the long-term impacts it can have.

“It ain’t the flu. When the flu’s over, it’s over. You’re typically not dealing with this,” Fine said.

He said his quarantine can end fairly soon and he’s able to resume physical activity as he feels up to it. His wife and two sons, who also had the virus, have recovered, Fine said. He said everyone in the family has the antibodies.

Fine said now that he is a COVID-19 survivor, he intends to donate convalescent plasma, something Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has encouraged residents who recover from the virus to do as he says convalescent plasma has proven to be a promising treatment for coronavirus patients.

For more information on how to donate convalescent plasma, click here.