Linda Lusardi: NHS helpline kept telling me I didn't have coronavirus

Linda Lusardi feared she would not recover as she battled coronavirus. (ITV)

Linda Lusardi has revealed she was repeatedly told she did not have coronavirus, as she was suffering vomiting and diarrhea.

The 61-year-old former Emmerdale actress is recovering at home after spending ten days in hospital where she tested positive for COVID-19 and feared she would not survive.

Lusardi told Good Morning Britain she and actor husband Sam Kane – who also tested positive – were struggling to breathe, but as they also had stomach problems they were told when they called 111 they did not have the disease.

READ MORE: Linda Lusardi shares first photo from home after beating COVID-19

She said: "We were in separate rooms, we were vomiting and had diarrhoea. When we phoned 111 they said they are not symptoms of corona [sic], which they weren't at the time... we carried on battling through.

28 PHOTOS
Linda Lusardi
See Gallery
Linda Lusardi
Former Page 3 model Linda Lusardi at RAF Northolt, London, to support the Always and Marie Curie Cancer Care Ladies Driving Challenge. Woman across the UK have been raising money to drive a variety of vehicles from milk floats to JCB'S. * to raise over 500,000 this year. LINDA LUSARDI
File photo dated 26/06/18 of Linda Lusardi, who has opened up on her coronavirus diagnosis and said the symptoms were so severe she waned to die.
File photo dated 9/9/2018 of Linda Lusardi and her husband Sam Kane. The Dancing On Ice star has returned home after a stay in hospital with Covid-19, her husband has said.
Linda Lusardi attending the launch of Andrea McLean's new book Confessions of a Menopausal Woman at the Devonshire Club in London.
Linda Lusardi attending the press night for the musical Dusty at the Charing Cross Theatre, London.
Linda Lusardi attending the London Lifestyle Awards at the Troxy in east London.
Linda Lusardi backstage at the 2013 TRIC Awards, at Grosvenor House on Park Lane, London.
Linda Lusardi with husband Sam Kane and their family arriving for the premiere of Katy Perry Part Of Me 3D at the Empire Cinema, Leicester Square, London.
Linda Lusardi arrives at a gala screening of Shrek: Forever After, at the Vue cinema in Leicester Square, central London.
Linda Lusardi arriving for the celebrity gala screening of Shrek Forever After at the Vue West End, London.
Linda Lusardi attends the gala screening of How to Train your Dragon, at the Vue cinema in Leicester Square.
Linda Lusardi arrives for the premiere of new documentary Dirty Oil at the Barbican Centre in London. Picture date: Monday March 15, 2010. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire
Linda Lusardi arrives at the TRIC Annual Awards, at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London.
Linda Lusardi arriving for the Tesco Mum of the Year Awards, at the Waldorf Hotel in London.
Linda Lusardi arrives at the TRIC Annual Awards, at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London.
Linda Lusardi preparing for the forthcoming Pantomime season.
Former model Linda Lusardi, who is starring as The Wicked Witch at the Swan Theatre in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, at the opening of the Tower of London ice rink.
Linda Lusardi in practice ahead of Dancing On Ice, which airs on ITV, at the Natural History Museum, London.
Linda Lusardi arriving at the premiere of High School Musical 2 at the Vue Cinema at the O2 Dome, London.
Emmerdale actress Linda Lusardi arrives for the British Soap Awards, at the BBC Television Centre in central London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday 26 May 2007. Photo credit should read: Yui Mok/PA Wire
Emmerdale actress Linda Lusardi arrives for the British Soap Awards, at the BBC Television Centre in central London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday 26 May 2007. Photo credit should read: Yui Mok/PA Wire
Linda Lusardi arriving.
Linda Lusardi at The Celebrity Awards, London Television Centre, London. Doug Peters/allactiondigital.com
Former Page 3 model Linda Lusardi with Corporal Steve Elliott at RAF Northolt, London, to support the Always and Marie Curie Cancer Care Ladies Driving Challenge. Women across the UK have been raising money to drive a variety of vehicles from milk floats to JCB'S. * to raise over �500,000 this year.
Former Page Three model Linda Lusardi with her husband, actor Sam Kane, arrive at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London, for the production of My Fair Lady starring former EastEnders actress Martine McCutcheon in the title role of Eliza Doolittle. LINDA LUSARDI
Former topless model Linda Lusardi during the Prima Baby Show at Olympia in London. Linda is celebrating her pregnancy in her favourite figure-hugging outfit. LINDA LUSARDI
Pregnant Linda Lusardi, who is expecting her child in August, is given a hand by Sainsbury's staff outside the store in New Cross, south London. She was promoting a new Sainsbury service in which staff devote special attention to the needs of expectant mothers, such as fetching forgotten goods and unloading shopping into cars. Facilities will also be improved, and product ranges expanded. Also the store is offering a year's free nappies to any woman that goes into labour in one of their stores. SEE PA Story CONSUMER Nappies.
Lying on a Ferrari, Linda Lusardi poses with the number plate L1 NDA, which is to be auctioned at the DVLA classic collection sale
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

"They said take paracetamol, drink plenty of water. Every time we drank water we were vomiting it up until I was getting so breathless and getting quite severe chest pains."

Lusardi revealed her son eventually persuaded her to phone 999 and when paramedics came to her house and ran tests, "I had got practically zero oxygen in my blood, they said I had to come in."

The former glamour model said she owed her life to the staff at North Middlesex hospital, but admitted that they were scared themselves as they did not have proper protective equipment.

She said: "They were very scared to begin with, this was a while back. They have got more PPE now and they have got more stuff... in the beginning they were coming on with just plastic on and little things round their faces and running in and doing stuff and running out of my room. They weren't prepared, they hadn't got the gear they needed."

Live: Follow all the latest updates from the UK and around the world

The actress previously confessed she felt so ill she had prayed she would never woke up.

But she said she is eternally grateful to the NHS staff "for giving me my life back."

Lusardi said: "Yesterday I sat in the garden with the sun on my face listening to the birds and I just held [son] Jack's hand and said, 'I'm just so so glad I'm here'."

Her husband Kane, 51, is also fully recovered.

And the former soap star urged people to follow social distancing rules.

She said: "My message to them is you are out and you are socialising with people, you might get the germs mildly yourself but you are going to give it to your mum, your sister, our grandmother, do you really want them to go through that? Self-isolate, protect the country. This will all be over quickly if we just follow the rules."

Lusardi found fame as a glamour model before branching out into acting. She competed in Dancing On Ice in 2008 and Celebrity MasterChef in 2011.

Lusardi and Kane married in 1998 and have two grown-up children, Jack and Lucy.

This article originally appeared on Yahoo
Read Full Story

FROM OUR PARTNERS