Nurse who survived COVID is educating the public on pros, cons of the vaccine

Posted at 7:57 AM, Apr 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-16 07:57:43-04

DETROIT (WXYZ) — A Detroit nurse who almost died from COVID-19 is now helping others by educating them about the vaccine to help protect them, their family and the community.

Monique Morris worked on the front lines taking care of COVID patients at Henry Ford Health. But, things took a turn early on during this pandemic and the virus nearly took her life.

“My heart rate wasn’t going below 120 and my oxygen wasn’t going above 88 and I knew something was wrong,” Morris said.

She was one of the first health care providers on the front line helping patients battling COVID-19 last March.

“We didn’t quite know what it was and how to treat it and we weren’t fully equipped with the PPE we needed all over the country," Morris said. "We were seeing scarcity of the proper PPE supplies and I got exposed giving treatment to covid patients."

Morris says things quickly took a turn for the worse when she started having a hard time breathing.

“My husband was kind of like, just get some rest, you just don’t feel good, you’ve got to sleep it off and I’m like, if my oxygen goes any lower I’m not going to wake up,” she said.

Her husband rushed her to the hospital. A CT scan revealed Morris had dense COVID pneumonia. Not even 24 hours later, Morris was out on a ventilator and fighting for her life.

“The doctors were just kind of asking my husband, hey what do you want to do here? She’s not making any improvements on the ventilator," Morris said. "In the event we have to take her off, she might not make it, so what are your choices."

The local nurse was on the ventilator for nine days. She eventually pulled through but not without harm already done. She had to learn to walk again and do regular physical therapy. Her story was even picked up by a National magazine. Morris wanted to get back to the front lines and help patients as soon as possible and has this message about the vaccine.

“Let’s make the best-educated decisions about our health," Morris said. "First thing's first is to protect ourselves from the virus."

Morris says she wants to give people the pros and cons of the vaccine and let them make their own decision. She says we all need to continue to follow health protocols so we can finally beat this virus.