Chris Cuomo shocked fans when he announced testing positive for COVID-19 and millions of viewers proceeded to tune in and watch him broadcast from his basement.
During Wednesday evening’s installment of Cuomo Prime Time, the anchor emotionally described his battle with the virus that has effectively brought the U.S. economy to a standstill. According to Mediaite, almost 3 million viewers tuned into CNN to hear his firsthand account about the scariest moments of his health scare.
During the candid segment, he described bouts of hallucinations where he had conversations with his late father, the immense pain that he likened to feeling like he was being beaten in the chest “like a piñata.” He also shivered so violently he actually chipped a tooth.
That episode of his show which airs on CNN at 9 p.m., drew an astounding 938,000 in the advertiser-coveted 25-54 demo, and in total drew in 2.89 million viewers. That’s almost triple what the top-rated CNN show was drawing on average in the last few months
Chris Cuomo’s Covid-19 experience sounds brutal pic.twitter.com/l31SPqX97q
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 2, 2020
“I want you to be thinking about everybody who’s not as lucky as I am. Who are dealing with the same that I am in 10 times worse,” he explained to his audience.
“Especially after what I learned last night. This virus came at me, I’ve never seen anything like it. Okay? So yeah I’ve had a fever, you’ve had a fever, but 102, 103, 103 plus, that wouldn’t quit, and it was like somebody was beating me like a piñata, and I was shivering so much that, Sanjay’s right, I chipped my tooth. These are not cheap.”
— Cuomo Prime Time (@CuomoPrimeTime) April 2, 2020
“And they call them the rigors, so the sun comes up, I’m awake, I was up all night, I’m telling you I was hallucinating, my dad was talking to me, I was seeing people from college, people I haven’t seen forever, it was freaky what I lived through last night. And it may happen again tonight. Doctor says it may happen like 5, 8 times,” continued the 49-year-old.
Cuomo shared that his symptoms allowed him to fully understand how others were feeling in this moment of crisis.
“You know, I get it now, and if you match that with chest constriction of people can’t breathe, I totally get why we’re losing so many people and why are hospitals are so crowded,” he said.
“So here’s the message: don’t be me, but more importantly be better than we’re being right now. Care enough not just to stay home but to stay on our leaders, to make sure that they’re doing everything they can to limit this. I’m telling you this is the part of our lives we will live through and remember the most. How do you want to be remembered during this time?”