Good Morning Britain host Kate Garraway revealed husband Derek Draper struggles with communication, as she addressed the impact of Covid on his brain and body
Kate Garraway told Good Morning Britain co-host Ben Shephard how her husband Derek Draper was “still terribly affected” following his Covid battle.
The GMB host told Ben and Dr Hilary Jones that “undoubtedly” the virus and complications had affected the way his brain connects to his body, as the trio discussed the latest news regarding vaccinations, and the possible scrapping of free Covid tests.
Derek, 54, contracted the coronavirus in March 2020 and did not return home for a year, after he was put into an induced coma by doctors.
He has battled severe long-term effects and a series of health problems since his diagnosis, including multiple organ failure and clots on his lung, and continues to recover almost two years on.
Kate’s new ITV documentary Caring For Derek, the follow-up to last year’s award-winning Finding Derek, updates viewers on Derek’s condition and his recovery, and airs next week.
Speaking ahead of the doc screening, she revealed the challenges her husband still faces, while confessing she doesn’t know if Derek is affected mentally, while she “would have thought” there would be some impact.
Addressing the idea that Covid-19 is still seen as a respiratory disease, despite the other challenges those with long Covid face, Kate revealed how Derek’s body is still impacted from the virus nearly two years on.
She explained, touching on her documentary: “Next week there’s another documentary about Derek coming out that I’ve done, Caring For Derek.
“Obviously he is still terribly affected by Covid, and undoubtedly it has had an effect on certainly brain connections to his body.”
Ben asked: “So not just physical wellbeing, but mental wellbeing as well?”
Kate responded: “I don’t know about mental wellbeing if I’m absolutely honest, because he is still so affected in terms of communication and mobility that I wouldn’t feel qualified to say whether it had had an impact in terms of depression and anxiety.
“I mean it must be I would have thought, because if you are still unable to communicate and very challenged mobility wise, and lung, and all the other things, then that is going to affect…”
She went on: “It’s interesting isn’t it that now at last… everything was focused on the lungs, and then people were understanding there is fatigue, which is actually a neurological problem anyway, and now more and more we are realising the wider impact.”
Derek requires around-the-clock care, and continues to have issues with mobility and communication, while the family have seen improvements that have given them hope.
Speaking in a preview clip ahead of the documentary airing, Kate said: “I’m very protective of people seeing him vulnerable but this is the reality of life for people that are caring. The person he is now, in many ways, is a stranger.”
Kate added: “If we have a love and he can be a dad to the children in a whole new way, that’s life isn’t it.”
Kate Garraway: Caring For Derek airs on ITV and ITV Hub on Tuesday, February 22 at 9pm.