Coronavirus patient from Japan cruise ship quarantine shares experience on home isolation

RIO VISTA, Calif. -- One patient sickened with the new coronavirus aboard a quarantined cruise ship in Japan is speaking out about his experience.

Retired firefighter Robert Young was one of about 380 of Americans evacuated after a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo. He and 14 other Americans fell ill with the virus at the center of the global outbreak.

He said this experience was something he'd never expected.

"I'm a career firefighter paramedic, I thought I've seen everything in the world. No, this doesn't even come close to it," he said.

Young is currently being isolated and monitored from his home in Solano County, California, where health officials confirmed a case of novel coronavirus believed to have been transmitted to a person who didn't travel internationally or come in close contact with anyone who had it.

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He's no longer showing any symptoms, but the county health department is checking every day to see when the virus clears out of his bloodstream so he can no longer spread the virus.

Although health officials say home isolation is much more comfortable than a hospital quarantine, Young said he relies on friends and family to care for his pets and get basic daily supplies.

"It's absolutely an ordeal. We have pets that, thank God our children are taking care of in another city," Young said. "The simple things like getting groceries, and toilet paper and sundries, we are at the mercy of family and friends purchasing it for us and then putting it in the driveway, then we pick it up. We can't have any direct contact."
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