LARGO, Fla. — The Pinellas County nurse paralyzed after contracting COVID-19 remains hospitalized in Boston.
Desmond Silva is in a Neurosciences ICU at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.
His mother said he contracted COVID-19 in July and had mild symptoms. He worked at Largo Medical Center for about 5 months before he became sick.
He had recently graduated from nursing school.
“Desmond is one of our nurses on the 4th floor. I hired him about 5 months ago as a brand new nurse. He is very energetic, very funny. Everybody loves to work with him,” said Amber Walker, a nurse manager at Largo Medical Center.
Two months after he contracted COVID-19, Desmond had neck and back pain.
His mother said he is being treated for inflammation of the spinal cord caused by a viral infection. He is paralyzed from the neck down.
“No parent should go through what we are going through. This does stem from COVID. We want people to be educated that this is something serious,” Desmond’s mother, Barbara Bonnet, told ABC Action News in July.
“We had just worked with him a couple of days prior to that. He had just talked about how he was a survivor of COVID,” added Walker.
To be close to family, he was transferred to Mass General Hospital.
Desmond turned 23 years old on August 12. His coworkers at Largo Medical Center sent him a banner filled with well wishes and positive thoughts.
“We just want to show him how much we love and care about him,” said Walker.
His coworkers also sent key lime pies to the healthcare workers who are caring for Desmond in Boston. They ordered the pies from Mike’s Pies in Tampa and had them shipped.
“We’re sad he’s in the hospital for his birthday, but nice to be able to send food and a thank you to his care team,” said Amelia Russell, chief nursing officer with Largo Medical Center.