The recovery from coronavirus of an Ethiopian man who is believed to be at least 100 years old has been described as "incredible", by one of the doctors who treated him.
Dr. Hiluf Abate, from the Yeka Kotebe hospital said, It's really incredible that he survived being so old and we are happy that he has been discharged".
According to Aba Tilahun Woldemichael's family, he is 114, which would make him the world's oldest man, but there is no birth certificate to confirm his age.
Although the hospital cannot confirm that its patient is 114 years old, the medical team says that he is definitely older than 100 and has estimated that he is 109.
In his youth, he moved to Addis Ababa from southern Ethiopia when he was young and has lived through tumultuous times in his country. Also, he witnessed the Italian occupation between 1935 and 1941, the overthrow of Emperor Haile Selassie in 1974, and the collapse of the Marxist Derg regime in 1991, and now he has survived Covid-19.
The doctor said, Aba Tilahun tested positive for the virus when a random screening process took place in his neighborhood in the capital, Addis Ababa, and was admitted to hospital before the symptoms showed and this allowed the medical team to be pro-active with its treatment and closely monitored the old man.
He also stated that within four days of his admission to the severe coronavirus ward in Yeka Kotebe hospital, Aba Tuliahun’s condition deteriorated as the virus took hold and he was put on oxygen.
In all, he spent 14 days at the hospital, and was treated with oxygen for more than a week and for years he has lived a simple life as a monk with the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
According to his 24-year-old grandson, Binyam Lulseged Tilahun, when his grandfather was younger he worked as an electrician, house painter and general handyman, and added that he was doing well and looked healthy despite his age, however the after-effects of the virus has weakened his voice.
Statistics has shown that people over the age of 80 are considered to be among the most vulnerable if they catch the virus. However, the centenarian is now being looked after at home by his grandson.
Ethiopia, which has strict coronavirus restrictions, has recorded more than 5,000 confirmed cases and 81 deaths.
In order to curb the spread of coronavirus, Ethiopia introduced a state of emergency in April that closed schools and playgrounds, banned large gatherings and sporting events, and reduced passenger numbers on public transport. But businesses have remained open.