St. Louis doctor returns home after 40 days in hospital battling COVID-19

ST. LOUIS – St. Louis physician is grateful to be back home after a harrowing experience with Covid-19.

Dr. Nadeem Qureshi, 55, spent several weeks in the hospital, isolated from family and friends as he remained in critical condition.

The numbers associated with his stay are astounding: 28 days in the ICU; 18 days of intubation; and 10 days on an ECMO machine.

“He was fighting this battle every single day alone, in a hospital, we were all praying, his Glennon family was praying,” his son, Dr. Moiz Qureshi, said.

The situation was so dire, doctors were unsure whether his father would make it.

He was placed on an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine after his lungs, kidneys, and immune system had failed.

It is unclear how Dr. Qureshi contracted the coronavirus. It is possible it happened while he was traveling overseas to the Middle East, Europe, and then New York. He was asymptomatic for a few days before the virus took over his system.

His recovery has meant the world to those whose lives he has touched.

Dr. Qureshi has more than three decades of experience as an emergency pediatric physician.

His extensive resume includes philanthropic work in his home country of Pakistan.

Qureshi has opened medical clinics in rural parts of the country, taught emergency pediatric medicine, and continues to speak at several international conferences.

He has served as an emergency physician with SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital since 2013.

Qureshi’s influence on those around him was evident Tuesday afternoon. Cardinal Glennon colleagues past and present surprised him with a “welcome home” parade in front of his family’s home.

While most parades during the COVID-19 pandemic are to mark birthdays – this one was an even more special celebration of life.

“I could have never imagined how fortunate I am, to have a family like you,” he tearfully told the group. “Of course I have my family here. But  I think you guys are amazing. I have no words to express. I really don’t.”

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