New Yorker suffering from long COVID lives in constant fear as restrictions begin to lift

Ken Todd is one of the thousands of New Yorkers suffering from long COVID

Josh Einiger Image
Wednesday, March 23, 2022
COVID long hauler lives in constant fear as NYC restrictions lift
Ken Todd is one of the thousands of New Yorkers suffering from long COVID after suffering a minor infection 15 months ago.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- As COVID restrictions ease in New York City, one resident still lives in constant fear of the virus more than a year after being infected.

Before COVID he ran 18 marathons. But these days, it's all Ken Todd can do to take a walk through his neighborhood, without needing to take a nap.

"This has been and for many people is a life changing disability," Todd said.

He's one of the thousands of New Yorkers suffering from long COVID.

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After his relatively minor infection 15 months ago, deep rooted exhaustion has infected his every interaction.

"I look fine and that's one of the frustrating things about this, it's kind of invisible," Todd said. "If I just interact with people, you'll never know but after I interact with people I have to lay down."

Todd is double vaccinated and boosted, but still, he lives in fear he'll catch the virus again. He's also in fear of the city's rolled back mandates - on vaccines for restaurants and even masks for kids in public school.

"The only way to do it right is to follow the science and that is what we're doing," New York City Mayor Eric Adams said on Tuesday.

The mayor announced that next month, unvaccinated kids under five will be able to go to school without masks.

Mayor Eric Adams announced that if COVID numbers continue to stay low, masks will be optional for kids ages 2-4 in day care and school.

This comes as yet another new variant picks up steam in England. It's said to be even more contagious than the Omicron strain, and it seems to be picking up speed at home in the U.S.

On Tuesday, Hillary Clinton announced she tested positive, as did the White House press secretary Jen Psaki.

With case numbers slowly rising again, Dr. Anthony Fauci on Tuesday, suggested the U.S. could see another wave, as early as next week.

"The advice is proceed with life as normal as you possibly can but be prepared that we might need to make modifications if things change," Fauci said.

"We don't know how my body will react if I get it again," Todd said.

Todd has stopped wearing a mask outside, but otherwise hasn't relaxed his precautions one bit, and he worries about all those other New Yorkers who have.

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