World, Latest on coronavirus outbreak

Fortune smiles on elderly as they beat COVID-19

Number of elderly people around globe recover from novel coronavirus pandemic gives humanity hope, reason to smile

Jeyhun Aliyev  | 15.04.2020 - Update : 16.04.2020
Fortune smiles on elderly as they beat COVID-19


The recovery of elderly people across the world from coronavirus has provided a thin glimmer of hope in these otherwise dark times.

Anadolu Agency correspondent compiled information from various news outlets on elderly people who have recovered from the coronavirus, giving the world hope and a reason to smile.

According to doctors, elderly people with chronic diseases are at the highest risk group and most of the time they are unable to recover from COVID-19.


On Tuesday, a 107-year-old Turkish woman was discharged from a hospital with applauds from medical staff and taken to her home for isolation after she received treatment for the coronavirus.

Havahan Karadeniz was admitted to a hospital last week with symptoms of high fever and cough, and tested positive for the virus.

Melig Cirag, the great-grandchild of Karadeniz, told Anadolu Agency that his great-grandmother was registered as 98 years old, but her actual age is 107.

Last Friday, Alye Gunduz, a 93-year-old farmer from Turkey's southeastern Batman province, who is also suffering from hypertension, recovered from the coronavirus after receiving 10-day treatment, and was discharged from Istanbul's Cerrahpasa Medical Faculty Hospital.

On Tuesday, the death toll in the country from the coronavirus rose to 1,403, with 65,111 confirmed cases, according to the Turkish Health Ministry. 


In the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the virus first emerged late last year, a 103-year-old woman recovered after just six days of treatment at a hospital, and safely returned home.

Zhang Guangfen was diagnosed at Liyuan Hospital, Tongji Medical College, on March 1.

China’s overall tally of COVID-19 cases surpassed 83,300, with death toll exceeding 3,300, according to data compiled by the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University (JHU).


In Iran, a 100-year-old coronavirus patient recovered from the virus that has killed a disproportionate number of elderly patients, and was discharged from Alborz University of Medical Sciences’ Sarallah Hospital in northern Alborz province, Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA) reported last Thursday.

The centenarian man was reported to be the oldest patient contracting COVID-19 in Alborz province, while previously, a 102-year-old woman and 106-year-old man recovered from the deadly disease in Iran's Zanjan and Qom provinces, respectively.

On March 18, another 103-year-old Iranian woman successfully recovered after contracting the deadly coronavirus. According to Nevid Danayi, the rector of Semnan University of Medical Sciences, the old lady "fully recovered" and was discharged from the hospital.

Iran has so far confirmed more than 4,700 fatalities, with total infections nearing 76,500.


Ada Zanusso, 104, who survived Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 to 1920, also survived the coronavirus, The Sun reported on April 5.

After falling ill on March 17at a nursing home at Biella in northern Italy, where the virus has already killed 20 fellow residents, Zanusso was admitted to the hospital since she was vomiting, feverish and struggling to breathe. She tested positive for COVID-19 at the hospital.

Among good news coming from Italy -- where the tally of COVID-19 fatalities exceeded 21,000 -- was also a recovery of a 95-year-old woman on March 18.

After being admitted to a hospital in Pavullo near Modena in the north of Italy on March 5, Alma Clara Corsini was able to return home after fighting off the potentially fatal virus without any antiviral therapy or medication, according to local Gazetta di Modena.

On March 29, a 101-year-old Italian man, identified only as Mr. P, successfully recovered from the deadly coronavirus.

It was not the first time that Mr. P encountered a pandemic, as he is also a survivor of the Spanish flu pandemic.

According to Gloria Lisi, the Vice Mayor of Rimini, medical staff at the hospital were hopeless for the man, since people older than 65 tend to experience more severe symptoms of COVID-19, but after he started recovering from the illness, Mr. P was discharged from the hospital.


In the U.K., great-grandmother Rita Reynolds, 99, from Bramhall in Stockport, fell ill due to the coronavirus on March 25. Against all odds and despite her family were expecting the worst, she is now among the oldest persons to have recovered from coronavirus, according to the Guardian on April 4.

Reynolds, who is looking forward to turning 100 in July, was reportedly a driver during the World War II, and at the age of 21 she survived a bomb that fell outside her home in Liverpool.

Separately, a pensioner in Scotland -- who will turn 99 this summer -- has stunned doctors by her will of fighting the pandemic, The Scottish Sun reported on April 8.

Daphne Shah has survived the virus after a week-long treatment in Ninewells Hospital in Dundee, a coastal city in eastern Scotland, where she was taken with a high temperature, persistent cough and breathing difficulties.

The First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon during her daily briefing in Edinburgh hailed an Indian-origin woman "for providing hope for the whole of Scotland."

The coronavirus death toll in the U.K. climbed to over 12,100, and total number of cases reached nearly 95,000.

The Netherlands

A day after celebrating her 107th birthday, a Dutch woman fell sick on March 18 at her nursing home on Goeree-Overflakkee, the southernmost delta island of the province of South Holland in the Netherlands, said local AD daily on April 7.

It was reported that Cornelia Ras was among 40 other residents who got infected after attending a church service.

About two-and-a-half weeks later, the pensioner was diagnosed as virus-free.

The news outlet reported that 12 people who attended the service with Ras have since died of the virus.

According to country's National Institute for Public Health and Environment on Tuesday, the Netherlands has diagnosed over 27,000 COVID-19 cases along with nearly 3,000 virus-linked deaths as of Tuesday, while over 8,900 patients are under treatment at hospitals.


William “Bill” Lapschies of Portland, Oregon, received his best birthday gift a 104-year-old could ask for -- he has successfully recovered COVID-19, said Oregon Public Broadcasting.

A World War II veteran, who lives in an assisted living facility and whose COVID-19 test came in positive last month, managed to survive the pandemic.

The doctors diagnosed Lapschies with "moderate case" of the virus and reportedly treated him with the malaria drug.

The staff wheeled one of the oldest-known survivors of coronavirus in the U.S. outside the state-run veterans’ facility -- Edward C. Allworth Veterans’ Home -- in Lebanon, Oregon, onto a small patio surrounded by balloons to celebrate his 104th birthday, where everyone spaced out six-feet to maintain social distancing.

The U.S. has the highest number of confirmed coronavirus cases and fatalities worldwide now with over 609,500 cases and more than 26,000 deaths, according to the data compiled by JHU in Maryland.


Among the survivors is also a 97-year-old woman from Recife in Brazil’s northeastern state of Pernambuco.

She was discharged from the hospital after spending 12 days in Sao Paulo hospital although her condition was "considered to be serious" when she was first hospitalized, said The Brazilian Report on April 12.

Another World War II veteran, 99-year-old Ermando Piveta, was discharged from hospital with military honors on April 15, as he recovered from COVID-19 after treatment, including two days in intensive care unit.

Piveta, who was a second lieutenant in the Brazilian Army and served in Africa during the war, was brought out of Brasilia's Armed Forces Hospital to trumpet music and applause.

Wearing an army cap, the vet saluted his doctors from the wheelchair, and said that winning his fight with the coronavirus was "bigger than winning the war."

Having nearly 25,700 confirmed coronavirus cases, Brazil has so far reported over 1,500 deaths and more than 14,000 recoveries, according to JHU figures.

South Korea

A 93-year-old South Korean woman infected with COVID-19 has "fully recovered and been released from quarantine", country's Yonhap News Agency reported on March 23.

After undergoing 13 days of intensive treatment at a nursing hospital in the southeastern city of Gyeongsan, the patient tested negative for the virus twice and returned home, it said.

It was reportedly said that the patient -- whose identity was not revealed -- was the oldest one among recovered cases in the country.

South Korea’s coronavirus cases are over 10,500, with the death toll at 225. More than 7,600 patients have recovered, according to JHU. 


An elderly couple, aged 93 and 88, have won together the battle against the coronavirus in India's southern state of Kerala, Press Trust of India reported early this month.

Thomas Abraham and his wife Mariyamma were tested positive for coronavirus and were admitted to the state Medical College Hospital in Kottayam on March 9, where the couple remained critical for days, before they completely recovered from the infection.

They twice tested negative for COVID-19 before being discharged from hospital in Maharashtra.

In a live televised address early on Tuesday morning, India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended the nationwide lockdown until May 3 as part of measures to curb the spread of the pandemic.

Despite the lockdown, India is seeing a surge in cases. There were over 11,500 confirmed cases in the country, with 396 deaths, according to data compiled by the JHU.

Since the virus emerged last December in the Chinese city of Wuhan, it has spread to at least 185 countries and regions.

There are nearly 2 million confirmed infections globally with over 127,500 deaths, according to the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University. More than 500,700 have recovered.

Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.