As of this writing, the John Hopkins University live reports calculate that there are currently 246,444 confirmed cases of COVID-19 globally, with a worldwide death toll of 10,040.
The United Kingdom has currently reported 3,297 cases of the coronavirus - one of which is "fit-and-healthy mother" Tara Jane Langston.
Per the Daily Mail, the 39-year-old mom-of-two was rushed to hospital by ambulance last Friday, and diagnosed with COVID-19 on Sunday.
While lying in a hospital bed in the ICU of Hillingdon Hospital in west London, the waitress shared a video of herself to social media, pleading with other people not to take "any chances" and to stop smoking.
The video has since been reshared by Tara's sister, who accompanied the video with the caption:
"My sister is in her 30’s & normal health she contracted CV-19 and has been in intensive care for a while now. Please please please be careful & follow all guidelines & health measures. Just because the news is highlighting the elderly & people with [underlining] health issues as being high risk that doesn’t mean if/ when you catch this your body will be able to handle/ fight it easily.
"[Tara's] had BIG issues breathing & with the help of the hospital & NHS she’s back talking & can share her experience. Love you 600 Tara Jane Langston your so strong & doing amazing we miss you so much can’t wait to annoy you again after all this is over."You can watch Tara's emotional plea in the video below:
Speaking to the MailOnline, Tara said: "It’s like having glass in your lungs, it’s hard to explain, but every breath is a battle.
"It’s absolutely horrible and I wouldn’t want to go through anything like this ever again. I’d been ill for about five days before I was taken to hospital in an ambulance.
"I’d originally been diagnosed with a chest infection and given antibiotics and advised to take ibuprofen and paracetamol. I was taking about eight ibuprofen a day and they now think that that exacerbated the problem.
'When I was taken into intensive care they originally planned to sedate me and keep me in intubation because my body had gone through it all for the best part of a week and I was shattered.
"Fortunately I was kept awake but needed six liters of oxygen. Now that I’m improving I’m on one liter."Related - An NHS nurse was recently left in tears after finishing a 48-hour shift, only to find no food in her local supermarket:
Langston also spoke about how she had still been seeing clips of commuters taking trains and people drinking in pubs - refusing to heed the advice of the government to stay home.
She explained: "People have to realize that they need to self-isolate, it’s the only way. Believe me.
"I can understand their mind-set because I had that attitude before of 'It’s a load of nonsense, it’s just being all hyped up'. Before I got this - I wasn’t one to buy into all the hysteria. But then I got the coronavirus and I never again want to experience anything like it because it was a deeply unpleasant experience.
"That’s why I filmed myself in the ICU and sent it to my workmates because they were supposed to be all meeting up for a training event and I wanted to tell them not to go as it wasn’t worth the risk. They’d be better off staying at home self-isolating.
"Whatever restrictions the government has now been put in place should have been done two weeks ago I believe. My story should be a warning to others – you need to take this seriously."
Tara's husband Richard, 34, later informed MailOnline that the couple had recently been on a trip to Auschwitz with people from all over the world - but admitted that his wife could have easily just have picked up the disease from her local gym.
Richard added that his wife is now out of intensive care and recovering, saying: "She's out of intensive care now and is making good progress. We just want her back at home."