Doctor Moves Into Tent in Garage to Protect His Family From Coronavirus

Irvine Dr. Timmy Cheng treated COVID-19 patients, so he's taking steps to protect his family from the virus has killed tens of thousands worldwide

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Desperate and uncertain times call for unusual measures, especially for medical professionals on the frontlines of a pandemic and their families. 

Consider Dr. Timmy Cheng, an Irvine pulmonary and critical care specialist who treated several COVID-19 patients in mid-March. He moved into his family’s garage, camping out in a tent to protect his family from the novel coronavirus.

Inside the tent, Dr. Cheng has a twin mattress, laptop and snacks. 

The family, including his wife, a toddler and parents, follows a strict process when bringing him meals.

“I can still see my family, we just keep our distance,” Dr. Cheng said. “They bring me food from the garage door. They drop it off at the doorway, they run away, then I go pick up the food.”

As of Thursday, more than 150 cases of COVID-19 had been reported in Orange County, including one death. The majority of those infected are in the 18-40 age group.


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Cheng's Facebook post included a heartfelt plea: "So, here it is. My home for the next __???__ weeks or months. You can help me and other healthcare workers become un-homeless by STAYING HOME. JUST DO IT. Nobody is too cool to stay home. Nobody is too healthy to get sick. STAY HOME and help stop the spread of this virus. Countless doctors, nurses, and other health care workers are working hard to save YOUR LIFE. The least you could do is stay home so that we, too, can go home to our loved ones one day."

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