ICU nurse walks out of California hospital after 8 months as a COVID-19 patient

LONG BEACH, Calif. -- It was a day one Southern California nurse thought would never come.

After coming close to death several times during eight months of treatment for the coronavirus, ICU nurse Merlin Pambuan finally walked out of the hospital on Monday.

Pambuan was not only a patient at St. Mary Medical Center in Long Beach, California - but had worked as a nurse there for 40 years.

Doctors say she came close to death several times and underwent painful physical therapy just to be able to stand again, but she made it.

Hospital staff cheered as she finally left to go home.

She had advice for other patients struggling with COVID-19: "Just fight. Fight. Because look at me: I'm going home and I'm walking."
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