British TV presenter Charlie Webster emerged from a medically induced coma on Thursday, after contracting a rare and life-threatening strain of malaria in Rio de Janeiro.
“Charlotte knows she nearly died,” the journalist’s mother, Joy, told The Guardian. “She mouthed to me earlier, ‘Look at all the machines keeping me alive.’”
Webster went to Rio full of excitement for the Olympics, where she was to be an ambassador for Team Great Britain. At the opening ceremony, however, she began to feel ill, and was in a hospital by the next day. Last Friday, doctors put her into the coma to keep her alive.
On Thursday they brought her out of that coma, and Webster’s family say they’re happy she’s awake and communicating. But the reporter is still suffering from kidney failure, and requires dialysis and a respirator.
Malaria is only one of several health concerns surrounding the Rio Olympics. Many athletes skipped the games to avoid catching the Zika virus, and Olympic swimmers and divers have complained about an infamously unclean pool.