Man who nearly died from COVID-19 and now struggles to breathe says he deserves 'punishment' for not bothering to get vaccinated

nurse treats a patient in hospital COVID intensive care unit
  • Abderrahmane Fadi said he spent nine days in the hospital and was “between life and death.”

  • He said it was “the punishment I deserve” for not getting a coronavirus vaccine.

  • Fadi added that he regretted turning it down: “Why didn’t I go for the vaccine? Why?”

  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A man who almost died from COVID-19 said he deserved “punishment” for not getting vaccinated against it.

Abderrahmane Fadi told the BBC he had to spend nine days in a UK hospital after he was infected in June and that he still struggled to breathe.

“I regret not having the vaccine, actually,” he said. “It hits me hard. It’s like a hammer in my head all the time: ‘Why didn’t you have the vaccine. You had all the chances, the opportunities, the appointments, the letters – everything.’

“And I declined. And that’s consequences. That’s the punishment I deserve, to the honest.”

The BBC journalist asked the 60-year-old science teacher if he really felt he deserved to be punished.

Fadi responded: “Why didn’t I go for the vaccine? Why?”

He said that when he was fighting the illness, “I was out of breath.”

“I was like a fish out of water,” he added. “I could not even breathe, and I was thinking: ‘This is it. It’s my life.'”

His sons, ages 9 and 7, were with him when the paramedics arrived: “They were crying,” Fadi said.

He said they saw him on the stretcher and likely thought, “Daddy’s gone forever.”

Fadi said that for the first days he was in the hospital, he felt “like I was between life and death.”

He credited his doctors with saving his life.

“It wasn’t easy to sustain my life,” he said. “They were trying everything just to keep me alive.”

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