3 time cancer survivor beats COVID-19 with the help of health care workers

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Danny Davis' symptoms started out like a cold, but when he couldn't breathe, he ended up in the emergency room.

The first time Davis had cancer he was told he had just months to live, but that was 20 years ago.

"I'm a three time terminal cancer survivor, and my second go-around was with malignant melanoma in my lung," said Davis,a COVID-19 survivor.

So, when he had what he thought was a cold last month, he knew he would beat that too, but things got worse.

"On July 7, I got up and I could barely get out of bed," said Davis.

He was rushed to the emergency room.

"Forty minutes later, I was in an emergency room bed being fed oxygen at giant levels," said Davis.

Danny tested positive for COVID-19. He said immediately any fears he had about the virus diminished after the doctor came in.

"He said, 'Don't you worry about a thing. We'll get you out of here,'" said Davis.

He said doctors and nurses immediately got to work.

"They were attacking the COVID virus like it was nothing. They were going after it. They weren't letting it come after me. They were going after it," said Davis.

It wasn't just the physical treatment, but also the emotional support and positivity that made Davis confident he was going home.

"We've heard of and know of studies where patients who have positive attitudes or their providers have positive attitudes actually end up having better health outcomes, and so, it's important," said Dr. Shabana Walia, an ER physician at Memorial Hermann and UTHealth.

A week later, Davis had a chance to return that positivity. He told the health care workers how appreciative he was for what they had done as he was headed home.

"You don't run from a fight. I learned a lot from people in here," Davis said about the health care workers.

"Even if someone didn't specifically treat Danny and they hear his story, I think it's going to resonate with them because it's just so hopeful to hear the little bit of good that's going on right now," said Walia.

Now, Davis has beat cancer and COVID-19.

"I'm not ready to go yet. I think somebody upstairs has something else he wants me to do," Davis said.

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