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Central Indiana teen recovering from near-death experience with flu

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Posted at 7:45 AM, Jan 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-17 07:46:15-05

INDIANAPOLIS — A 13-year-old boy has been at Riley Hospital for Children since October as he recovers from a bout of the flu that nearly killed him.

Matthew Ramseyer was the nurse who was on the lifeline helicopter that flew Josh Roy from the Anderson area to Riley.

"This is just the flu. Anybody can catch it," Ramseyer said. "These younger kids who we think are normally really healthy, they can have a souped up response and get really sick like this."

The lineline crew got there just in time because, for Josh, the flu virus brought on even more severe complications — septic shock and hypoxia. Once he got to Riley, Josh remained on life support for 54 days.

Aimee Maychack, the paramedic on Josh's lifeline flight, said everyone can learn something from Josh's story.

"I felt really bad, really for his mom and family on this situation, because it seemed like such a sudden onset of this illness," Maychack said. "Be mindful always you know when you're sick, follow up with a physician."

Ramseyer said it's not too late to get a flu shot, which you can get at your primary care doctor, urgent care clinics or drug stores like CVS and Walgreens.

"Across the board anybody needs to be aware and, obviously, get the flu shot, and if it doesn't prevent the illness overall, it'll lessen the symptoms," Ramseyer said.

With his strength and stamina returning, Josh doesn't want much, other than to get back to being a normal teenager. And he'll have a chance to do that thanks in large part to his lifeline crew.

If everything goes as planned, Josh will be able to go home next Tuesday, which would mark his 100th day in the hospital.

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