Ad Spot

October 24, 2020

VIDEO: Mississippi hospital staff celebrates patient’s discharge after 111 days fighting COVID-19

Shouts of “hallelujah” and applause filled the first floor of Merit Health Natchez hospital on Friday.

A former COVID-19 patient, George Davis Collins, was discharged Friday after a lengthy stay at the hospital.

Collins, 81, had one of the longest battles against the disease the hospital had seen yet, said Stephanie Rehms, rehabilitation director at Merit Health. Collins was hospitalized for a total of 111 days, she said.

“He never gave up,” Rehms said of Collins. “It’s a good day when you can discharge one patient, much less two of them.”

Collins is better known as “Peter Rabbit” by friends and customers at Davis Produce — a business he has operated for 25 years up until he became ill in May, said his daughter, Deautral Davis.

George Davis Collins, 81, better known as “Peter Rabbit” and the long-time owner of Davis Produce in Natchez, was discharged from Merit Health Natchez Friday afternoon after being hospitalized for a total of 111 days due to complications with COVID-19.

Collins was admitted to the hospital with severe dehydration on May 4, she said.

“When we brought him in, he didn’t have any signs of COVID-19 and the next day he started running fever. Then they tested him for COVID. In the next couple of days, it came back positive and he’s been hospitalized ever since,” Davis said.

Davis said her father had several close calls with the disease.

“After he was put on the ventilator … they had to resuscitate him several times. It was really close. They actually called me to his bedside a couple of times because they didn’t think he was going to make it,” she said. “They asked me if I wanted them to resuscitate him again and I told them yes because I felt that he was continuing to fight to live.”

After 52-days at Merit, Collins was sent to a long-term acute care facility and later returned to Merit’s rehabilitation unit. He was on a ventilator for 35 days, said Kay Ketchings, director of marketing at Merit Health.

“It was rough,” Collins said of his illness. “(Going home) feels real good.”

For each patient who recovers from COVID-19, Merit Health sends them off with a “Code Hallelujah,” — a celebration in which hospital staff line up in the halls to congratulate the patients for their recovery as they make a red carpet exit, Ketchings said.

“It’s by the grace of God that my father is alive,” Davis said. “My family all prayed. We never stopped praying. We never gave up. We went to his bedside and told him not to stop praying and to never give up and he didn’t. He was a fighter.”

News

Census takers fall short of target goal in Mississippi, Louisiana and other parts of country

News

Mississippi man with previous convictions charged with capital murder in death of ex-girlfriend

News

Mississippi apparel plant wins $10.6 million contract to make military clothing

News

Boy, 13, is second to die after shooting at Mississippi fast food restaurant

News

U.S. Immigration officers accused of torturing migrants at Mississippi detention facility

News

Drugged-out man performs nearly-naked dance routine for Interstate drivers

News

After video surfaces, prosecutor considers charges in 2017 shooting by two Mississippi police officers

News

Latest coronavirus numbers indicate virus continues to spread across Mississippi

News

Thieves steal fire truck, equipment from Mississippi volunteer fire department

News

Hurricane center keeping eye on tropical disturbance that could enter Gulf

News

Southwest Airlines returning to Mississippi airport in 2021

News

Gap Inc. closing 350 stores, moves towards leaving malls

News

Hearing set for woman convicted of torturing, killing her two stepchildren

News

Mississippi State to host in-person commencement ceremonies this fall

News

Six people charged with defrauding $12 million with fake theology school

News

Forecasters recall the intensity of a record-setting hurricane that will be forever overshadowed by Katrina

News

Surge in Mississippi coronavirus cases continues with latest statistics

News

President Trump endorses Hyde-Smith for U.S. Senate

News

Man sentenced to jail for killing girlfriend with homemade gun

News

In Mississippi, Black voters face many hurdles

News

Nearly $69,000 seized from Mississippi inmates in crackdown on smuggling ring

News

Community left stunned after longtime judge found dead at home

News

Suspect arrested in deadly shooting at Mississippi fast food restaurant drive through

News

Former owner of Mississippi grand mansion sentenced to federal prison