DJ Ace: High-risk people like me can get coronavirus and be fine

By Will Chalk
Newsbeat reporter

  • Published
DJ Ace

BBC 1xtra's DJ Ace says he's fully recovered after testing positive for coronavirus.

The presenter is on the waiting list for a new kidney - meaning he's at a higher risk of getting severe symptoms from the virus.

He's posted on Instagram reassuring people with underlying health problems that getting Covid-19 doesn't always mean "the worst case scenario".

But he stresses it's important to "do everything [experts] tell you to do".

Chronic kidney disease is on the list of conditions considered "higher risk" by the government.

Higher risk people are being "strongly advised" to follow social distancing rules.

Ace has been waiting for a new kidney for two years.

This means going to hospital for regular dialysis sessions - where he's hooked up to a machine that filters his blood.

"You might have noticed I haven't been on the radio for the past two weeks," he says in this latest post.

"It's because my condition puts me in a high risk and vulnerable category, so I've been advised not to go back to work for now.

"But I have had to continue having my dialysis sessions three times a week and about 10 days ago I had fever and I had some real body aches."

He explains that he was sent to a dialysis session in isolation and was tested for the coronavirus.

Ten days later, he says, that test came back positive.

"I'm just putting this video out there for people who are like me who have underlying health issues to say you can get the virus and you can still be fine," he adds.

"I had symptoms for like two days, I had fever and I had body aches, I didn't have the cough and I've come out of it very well."

Following official advice, he's now gone back into self-isolation.

Image caption,
Faizan says staying inside is "for the greater good"

Like Ace, 34-year-old Faizan Awan from Blackburn is waiting for a new kidney.

But he does his dialysis treatments himself, at home, and this means he hasn't left his house - at all - in nearly a month.

"It's been a month, but it's felt like a year," he tells Radio 1 Newsbeat.

"It can get tiresome, it can start to play with your head a bit. Days drift into each other after a while but it's for the greater good."

He says he's "not scared" of coronavirus - and agrees with Ace that the most important thing is to follow official advice.

"I live with my family and my mother is getting older and my brother has asthma so although they're healthier than I am I wouldn't want to put them or myself at risk by not listening to guidelines."

Image caption,
Faizan does his dialysis treatment overnight in his bedroom

A spokesperson for kidney support charity The National Kidney Federation has told Newsbeat: "We know the current Covid-19 pandemic is a worrying time for patients.

"Government guidelines are to be followed by everyone, but kidney patients have extra concerns about keeping themselves safe.

"The National Kidney Federation operates the only UK helpline dedicated to kidney patients and their families, for help and advice in this worrying time, call free of charge on 0800 169 09 36."

If you're worried about what the UK government advice on coronavirus is for you, visit here.

Follow Newsbeat on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Listen to Newsbeat live at 12:45 and 17:45 weekdays - or listen back here.