The very real danger of catching COVID-19 when abroad


For all that I’m profoundly skeptical about the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines, I’m nevertheless in no doubt about the danger of the disease if it gets hold of you.  I’ve had it twice, last year and this year, and it’s no fun at all.  Fortunately, despite belonging to several of the higher-risk groups that are threatened by it, I was able to treat it locally both times, and did not have to be admitted to hospital.  (You’d better believe I keep effective medication against it on hand now, because there’s nothing to say I won’t get it again;  but in my limited experience, it’s not as scary as they make it out to be.)

However, if you get a bad case of it, it’s every bit as serious as severe pneumonia (which often accompanies it), and it can be life-threatening.  Two recent accounts of people who caught COVID-19 in third world countries are eye-opening, and make us realize how lucky we are to live in a nation where first-class medical care is relatively freely available.

Greg Ellifritz is a well-known firearms and personal security instructor;  we’ve met him several times in these pages.  On a recent trip to Ecuador, he caught a nasty dose of COVID-19, and had to resort to under-the-counter methods to get out of that country and back to the USA for treatment.  (Interestingly, he says Ivermectin did nothing to help him.  Also, he was vaccinated, but that didn’t prevent him getting infected;  however, according to the doctors who treated him, it prevented his case from being even worse.  Judge for yourself.)

The town where I was staying had no hospital or clinic.  It didn’t even have a practicing physician.  There was a tiny general medical clinic in the next town over, but it had very poor reviews.  The closest real hospital was about 90 minutes away.  The better hospitals were in Guayaquil, about three hours away.

Ecuador had some serious problems handling Covid patients a few months ago.  In Guayaquil, the bodies of Covid-19 casualties were literally dumped in the street.  I did some quick calculations.  About 30% of the Covid-19 patients who were admitted into the hospital in Ecuador died.  I really wanted to avoid Ecuadorian hospitals.

. . .

My previous plan was to ride everything out and fly back home once I was no longer contagious.  My difficulty breathing altered that plan.  I needed to get home to some real medical care before I died in Ecuador.  It was time to change my flight and go home early.  I changed my flight and planned to move to a bigger city for a day in case my symptoms worsened and I needed immediate local medical attention.

The problem now was the fact that I needed a negative Covid-19 test to get back in the country … As an admission to one of these tactics might be a crime, I’m not going to tell you how I got on board the flight, but it wasn’t difficult.  The documents were the least of my worries getting out of the country.

. . .

[Back in the USA] They took CAT scans of my lungs.  The doctor showed me the films.  It was staggering.  The CAT scans looked like both of my lungs were completely filled with broken glass.  The diagnosis was double Covid-19 pneumonia.  I would need steroids, anti-virals, and oxygen until my lungs healed up and started working again.  Fortunately, I responded to the nasal oxygen and didn’t need to be intubated … I ended up spending six nights and seven days in the hospital until I could breathe well enough that I could be released.

There’s more at the link.

In his lengthy article, Greg links to a long Facebook post by Angela Sarwar, a nurse from Texas who caught COVID-19 while on vacation in St. Lucia in the Carribean.  It’s also a very interesting study in the perils of Third World medical care.

The day before our departure we had to get a COV1D test to be able to fly out. Two people masked and gloved come to our room and tell us we both ended up with positive tests and we are being quarantined and not allowed to return home for at minimum 11 days. Confusing in itself, I felt fine, and his only *sickness* was the muscle issue and he said his throat was scratchy. I immediately start crying hard saying I have babies at home I have to get to and they just tell us to pack our bags.

We pack up, have a dr come to our room and test us again and confirm the positives. Then move us across the resort to a quarentine approved room. We’re given a phone with a Dr’s phone number and the number of the director and both say will fully treat us, give us whatever we need, everything is covered, 24/7 contact. They bring us plenty of linens, trash bags, coffee and close the door. And that’s it. Tony and I took a nose dive towards the worst. And no answer. The pain and the symptoms grew beyond belief and we were feeling two completely different lists of symptoms and miserable.

The doctor will not answer. The director cannot contact the doctor. But at 8:30,12:45, 5:30 that phone rings to bring us a meal. If I ask any other questions for any other help. I’m told I’ll be called back and the phone doesn’t ring again until meal time. I call for the resort nurse. She is kind but says she isn’t allowed to help me. I can only communicate with our designated doctor. Who doesn’t come by. Doesn’t call.

Why do we not go to the hospital? Well, it’s a 3rd world country government hospital. The limits on care and medical abilities is nill. We’re told once we choose to leave the resort to that hospital care, we are not allowed to return and become quarantined property of their government until they deem us fit to go home or we pass their number of days. On Monday they said they would tell us how many days our quarantine would be mandated. Today is Thursday and they haven’t called yet. We haven’t received medical attention. We cannot leave.

I’ve called the U.S. Embassy many times. I was told with our insurance we should be covered to be medevaced to the U.S. for health care. The government here is saying that isn’t their policy. Realizing the seriousness of *This is a third world country* something I should have considered before coming. But I’m like *it’s a Sandals resort, it’s St. Lucia, it’s great*. We want to go home. We want to be back on our soil. We want U.S. doctors and U.S. medicine. We want real treatment. Our U.S. doctor FaceTimed us and said we need a long list of medications and he tried calling it to the island – even if that was successful we would have to find someone to get it to us – but no pharmacy would fill it saying they don’t have those medications here. We try to get it FedExed but that’s going to take 2 days shipping + 7 days in customs and then their decision if we can have it. Two nights ago I thought my chest was going to quit, I thought I would quit breathing in my sleep it was so difficult, the next night the pain in my back and joints was excruciating, finally today its bearable to be alive. Tony is not doing better yet and the doctor will not answer. The resort will not send me my details of insurance inclusion and the fine print in the email is minimal. Something you don’t think about when booking and excited for a vacation.

Again, more at the link – much, much more.  It’s a sobering account, particularly because Ms. Sarwar is a nurse, and is thus in a position to evaluate the (lack of) medical care they received from a more objective perspective.

I highly recommend reading both articles in full.  If you may have to travel outside the USA for any reason, I’d plan on avoiding countries with that sort of medical “care”, whatever you do!  I’d also plan on taking with me as much medication as I’m likely to need, and then some.  If you don’t need it all, someone else might.



  1. Common hygiene plays a part here. I suspect it's not as much of a priority in third-world nations.

    If there's anything good that can come out of this, it's that people hopefully realize how much hetter life can be if you simply wash your hands frequently.

  2. Maybe flu then Covid? You are significantly more covered by natural antibodies than any vax, and Covid false positives to garner per "case" federal cash is a nasty incentive. According to the CDC there were NO influenza cases last year, which immediately says they are lying. Getting a Covid vax now could be detrimental to your immune system.

  3. I think Paul M has the right of it. After over a year the CDC finally admitted that the PCR test could not tell the difference between Covid and a cold or flu. For some reason the are letting it be used until Dec. 21 but it will not tell you if you have Covid or not. There is no test that can differentiate the Delta variant either.

    The authorities have been deceiving us on much of this and I am not inclined to believe anything they say as it is obvious there is an agenda behind the propaganda.

    I am curious what test was used the two times you had Covid? If it was the PCR test you don't actually know if you had Covid or not.

  4. With travel, prob a good idea to have some Rx treatments to prevent/treat covid on hand and not rely on destination health care. Simplest is boosting immune system with daily vitd, vit C, zinc and a zinc ionophore – quercetin, green tea extract or panang (ginseng type). This make it harder for covid to get a good foothold/allows your immune system to make a better defense up front.

    Also suggest you take a look at a group of experienced/eminent US docs who've been voicing their opinions not parroting the CDC narrative. covid treatment seems to vary based on the state of disease progression.

  5. With everything going on right now, to me travel abroad should only be considered for the most urgent matters. With ever changing rules, limited legal options, etc it is gambling with your life (some of these places it is always that way!).

    I know someone who was in a resort in Mexico recently… they had a stack of negative tests and they put his name and a date on one!

  6. And this is, after a sojourn outside of 'The States' from age 10 to age 13, any travel outside of most of the US has been highly uninteresting to me.

    I did the 'Shot Hall from Hell' as a kid, and stayed on tentatively US soil all the time except for one daytrip into 3rd World Hell (the next island over.) That was enough to convince me that I really really wanted to never leave the States again.

    Especially as I am wont to pick up the stray weird infection and flu here in the States.

    As to relying on a US Embassy? Pshaw. Haven't trusted the State Department since, well, meeting some of them back when I was a kid and they came to dinner with my dad.

    It's much the same when touring segments of the US now. You must travel with your own meds, not rely on the locals, and you also must look at the risk factor of said travel.

    Family in car travelling on the highways, staying in hotels and eating at restaurants? Pretty safe overall.

    Cram yourself into an airplane and travel to exotic third-world locations (you know, the ones that used to be known for exotic third-world diseases and infections) and not expect to get sick? In the words of our pudding-brained (un)leader, Come on, Man!

  7. Guess what? Soon you can add the good ole USA to the list of Third World sh###oles. Import the Third World, become the Third World.

  8. Boron – Imagine a hall in a military base hospital with 7-10 tables. Each one is a vaccination station. The farther you go down the hall, the worse the vaccines are and the worse are the diseases you will be exposed to.

    1st table, you're going to Canada or England.
    2nd table, Northwestern Europe
    3rd table, Turkey etc.
    N-2 table, Pacific including Japan (Islands only, not the Philippines.)
    N-1 table, SE Asia
    N table, Sub-Saharan Africa.

    Oh, you're a dependent whose military person is being posted to Greenland – visit table one only.

    Or you're a dependent whose military person is being posted to Kwajalein or Johnston Atoll – visit each table until you get to N-2 table. Jab jab jab jab and jab.

    Oh, going to an advisor's post in Sub-Saharan Africa? Your arm will now look like an epileptic woodpecker mistook your arm for a rotten tree.

    So at one time, I was pretty much immune to anything you'd find in the Continental Americas. At one time. And, boy, did my arm swell for days!

  9. Thank you; just couldn't figure it out.
    I got mine (N-1) at one of the hospitals in NYC several weeks before I went to OBMTM at Sheppard in '66. Unfortunately, I never got the chance to get exposed.

  10. Seems like the efficacy of either Ivermectin or HCQ is questionable, and the current state of politicized "science" is unlikely to be able to resolve the issues for many folks. If there are any legit studies, those reports will be suppressed in the current environment.

    But for the sake of argument, if Ivermectin does have efficacy for woo-floo, I have doubts as to its efficacy in combination with the fauci juice inoculations. Completely un-studied combination, and it seems worth knowing. If Ivermectin does have efficacy, do all of those fauci juice spiky proteins interfere?

    But since either HCQ and Ivermectin in appropriate dosages generally have fewer side effects than acetaminophen, the efforts to suppress them are curious at best. Spidey senses a-tingle. What with the fauci juice having short duration efficacy, more Spidey sense tingling. Untested "boosters"…..more Spidey sense tingling.

    Small wonder folks are hesitant. What reason is there to trust any of the officious ScIeNcY pablum? If they don't care about citizens trapped in a third world S*** Hole, why would they care more about proles trapped here?

  11. I can personally testify that ivermectin is highly efficacious against the WuFlu. It made a run through my house and the worst of us was back on his feet two days after the first dose, and he was VERY sick (two weeks later, he still can’t taste or smell anything though). A 69 year old friend with several other health issues took it after struggling with WuFlu-turned pneumonia for almost two weeks. She too was on her feet a few days later. This stuff works. YMMV, and do your due diligence.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *