Exclusive: I lost my taste and smell, says Milton Keynes Hospital CEO on his experience with COVID-19

The CEO of Milton Keynes Hospital, Professor Joe Harrison, told MKFM that both he and his wife had coronavirus.

Professor Harrison did not suffer from the most common symptoms - a cough or a fever. He told MKFM: "Three months ago I lost my taste and smell. I was lucky enough to have read the research that had come out of Wuhan and I knew that, although it wasn't confirmed, those were symptoms of COVID-19 and I acted accordingly."

On Monday (18/5), the Government announced that loss of taste and smell (also known as anosmia) was to be added to the official list of coronavirus symptoms. Previously, only a fever and a cough were included in the Government's list.

The CEO of Milton Keynes Hospital continued: "I was very fortunate. I didn't have any significant symptoms at all other than losing taste and smell, and I was otherwise completely healthy."

Professor Harrison proceeded to tell MKFM about his wife's experience with the virus. "My wife unfortunately has had it and she was bed bound for two weeks," he continued. "It hit her very hard indeed. She was lucky that she didn't need to go into hospital, but she's absolutely fit and healthy and back to work again now.

"There is no real difference, in terms of physically, between us. She is probably a lot healthier and a lot fitter than I am and it just so happened that she was more significantly impacted by it unfortunately."

The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that along with the most common symptoms (fever, cough and tiredness) people may experience:

  • aches and pains
  • sore throat
  • diarrhoea
  • conjunctivitis (red eye)
  • headache
  • loss of taste or smell
  • a rash on skin, or discolouration of fingers or toes