A prominent anti-vaxxer tarot card reader and reiki master based in the town of Mullumbimby, near Byron Bay, is currently fighting for her life in an ICU ward, her friend has said.
Helen Dean, who also goes by the name of Heeling, was hospitalised for Covid-19 on Christmas Eve, and required the support of a ventilator. She is also believed to be unvaccinated, The Daily Telegraph reports.
Sharing their well-wishes on Dean's social media, a friend said Dean has since been moved to the "general ICU" for "ongoing care and monitoring".
News.com.au has approached NSW Health for comment, however they are unable to discuss individual patients due to confidentiality.
Based in the Byron Shire town of Mullumbimby – which is known for its alternative culture – Dean also regularly shares YouTube videos on manifestation, grounding and cleansing techniques and video guides on "releasing toxic stuff" by using leaves, candles and bundles of sage – also known as smudge sticks.
The holistic health practitioner has also been vocal in her opposition of vaccine mandates.
Dean has shared multiple Facebook posts against vaccine mandates, including photos of protesters holding up signs with messages like: "Discrimination is not democracy," "We say not to medical apartheid," and "My body my choice".
In another post, Dean shared her support of the anti vaccine mandate #reclaimtheline rally at Tweed Heads.
"Amazing photo of my brothers and sisters that walked the hill. United in white. Making people take the vaccination to keep their jobs or having to be double vaxxed to get hired. Is not free choice," she wrote on November 7.
This comes as a rising hospitalisations among the unvaccinated have required health services to open a third Covid ward at the Lismore Base hospital.
Known as the anti-vaxxer capital of Australia, the area's 85 per cent vaccination rate trails behind the state's 93.8 per cent figure.
In light of the rising numbers, doctors said their fears of a "tsunami" of unvaccinated Covid patients flood hospitals had eventuated,
"We are seeing an almost exclusively unvaccinated population in the hospital and exclusively unvaccinated in the intensive care ward at this point," Dr Chris Ingall told The Daily Telegraph.
"We predicted this, we said there would be a tsunami here, everyone predicted it would sweep through the pockets of the unvaccinated."
Hospital staff state they're under "extreme strain" with up to 100 people a day seeking admission at the Byron Central hospital, The Guardian reports.
"We have a positive pressure room also that is being used as an isolation room and another room which we can close an actual door on," the hospital worker said.
"These are often all taken up, so we have Covid-positive patients in bays behind curtains because we can't get people to where they need to be in a timely manner."
As of January 17, 4993 patients have currently been hospitalised for Covid, with 411 people in ICU and 123 patients requiring ventilators. NSW numbers make up half of the figures, with the state reporting 2776 hospitalisations, with 203 people in ICU and 61 on ventilators.