Mill Creek man says clinical trial of remdesivir saved his life during his battle with COVID-19

VIDEO: Man says clinical trial of Remdesivir saved his life during his battle with COVID

“I feel great — 100% better. I have been riding my bike more, walking a lot, pretty much back to normal. To some degree, I don’t have as much stamina as I used to, but I think that’s part of the results of having had COVID,” said Phil Snyder.

Snyder, 59, was diagnosed with COVID-19 in early March.

“It was hard-labored breathing, felt like I was going to pass out,” said Snyder.

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He made it to the emergency room at Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett. He was given oxygen and was one of the first people in the area to receive the trial drug remdesivir. Snyder said it started working immediately.

“It would feel like if you’re on a long hike, and you just come over that hump at the top and, oh, you finally feel like you can catch your breath,” said Snyder. “I think what the remdesivir did is it kept me from getting to that ventilator stage, and so I was very relieved and grateful once I hit that turning point.”

The antiviral drug hasn’t been approved by the Food and Drug Administration, but it was authorized for emergency use for coronavirus patients in the hospital in May. It’s one of the drugs used to treat President Donald Trump in his battle against COVID-19. On Monday, he walked out of Walter Reed Medical Center after a three-day stint there.

“COVID can be a very serious infection, and I hope the president recovers well and is able to get back to his routine. But it does not minimize what a severe disease this is,” said Dr. J. Randall Curtis with Harborview Medical Center.

Even though he’s survived the disease, Snyder isn’t taking any chances.

“There are people that have gotten it again. I’m aware of that, so I treat it as if I could still get it,” Snyder said.