Local investigator hospitalized for COVID-19, says he regrets not following precautions

Morgan County Sheriff’s Office Investigator Joey Clark is home from the hospital, still battling COVID-19

Investigator battling COVID-19 in Morgan County

MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. (WAFF) - “I really didn’t take it that serious, and I should’ve taken it more seriously than I did,” Joey Clark said.

At the beginning of December, Morgan County Sheriff’s Investigator Joey Clark tested positive for COVID-19.

”At 47-years-old, I’d never thought it would’ve taken me down that quick,” he explained.

Investigator Clark says he has no pre-existing conditions and was not in a high risk category to contract this virus.

However, a week after testing positive, Clark’s symptoms had grown exponentially worse.

He went to Decatur-Morgan Hospital on December 16. He says they turned him away since his oxygen levels weren’t that bad yet and there wasn’t a bed available.

”On the 18th in the morning I woke up and I knew I was taking my last breath. I couldn’t breath and I knew I had something going on. Decatur already told me I had pneumonia in my lungs from COVID, and so at that point I knew I needed to get to a hospital,” Clark continued.

An ambulance took Clark to Huntsville Hospital main that day.

”I had no idea from there how much it would progress and what the effect it would do to my body and how quick it did,” Clark said.

Clark was lucky and made it out alive.

He says there were patients in the hospital who wouldn’t experience the same.

Now he says it’s up to you to make that difference.

”Wear your mask, take your precautions and it’s out there and it’s real. It’s no joke. It’s no playing matter. From now on, I’ll do my part,” Clark continued.

On Tuesday, nearly 100 patients are being treated for COVID-19 at Decatur-Morgan Hospital. Twenty percent of those are on life-supporting ventilators.

Nearly 100 staff members are also out, either testing positive for the virus or in quarantine.

Doctors say wearing your mask, social distancing and sanitizing does work if you actually do it.

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