Rugby league player Mose Masoe has urged people to stay at home after becoming a victim of the ripple effect of the coronavirus pandemic.
The 30-year-old Hull KR co-captain, who is making remarkable progress in his recovery from a serious spinal injury sustained in a pre-season friendly in January, has been told he must leave Pinderfields Hospital in the next 72 hours and continue his rehabilitation at home.
The news came as a blow to the Samoan international, who will not play again but recently started walking with the assistance of parallel bars.
“They’ve got to clear out a lot of wards to get in the people who have coronavirus so a lot of us have to go home,” Masoe said on the Hull KR website.
“I’m not really ready to go home at all. It will be nice to get home so I can spend some time with my kids but there’s a lot of things I can’t do myself, like going to the toilet and things like that. I don’t want to put a burden on my missus.
“We just got the news this morning so we’re still in the dark. When you get a spinal injury we’re at a high risk. A lot of people forget our immune systems drop.”
Masoe says he has been told hospital staff are concerned about patients catching the virus and are also trying to clear out the wards for people who need treatment for it.
“We need people to stay home so we can get back into the hospital to do rehab,” he added. “People need to stop being selfish because we’ve felt the effects already.
“It’s the first time in the world you can save lives by just staying home watching TV or playing PlayStation. That’s my frustration with people who aren’t listening.
“My wife is pregnant so they’ve all been staying home and she’s only going out to get food. They’ve been doing the right thing and staying away. I haven’t seen them for two weeks.
“I’m gutted to be going home because I wanted to keep my progression going. The next step was to go from parallel bars to a walking frame to crutches and then you can pretty much walk by yourself.”
Masoe is unable to take equipment home with him due to limited resources at the hospital in Wakefield but Hull KR and the RFL Benevolent Fund are hoping to help him out.
“I called my missus this morning and she’s tried to get a stair lift and the Benevolent Fund have pretty much said they’ll sort that for me,” he said.
“I’m very lucky and grateful to have the support and that network but I feel real sorry for the other patients that don’t have that. It’ll be tough for them.”