She's currently in the ICU.

By Christopher Luu
Feb 12, 2021 @ 4:12 pm
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Ashley Judd is currently hospitalized in South Africa after shattering her leg in the Congo region of Africa. During an Instagram Live interview with The New York Times' Nicholas Kristof, Judd explained that she is "in an ICU trauma unit in beautiful South Africa, which has taken me in from the Congo: a country I deeply love which is not, unfortunately, equipped to deal with massive catastrophic injuries like I have had."

Judd took the opportunity to explain the economic disparities in Congo, saying that she was fortunate to have access to disaster insurance, something many people don't. She noted that she had to travel for 55 hours to get medical attention for a shattered leg and nerve damage.

"And the difference between a Congolese person and me is disaster insurance that allowed me 55 hours after my accident to get to an operating table in South Africa," she said. She added that Congolese people can't even get "a simple pill to kill the pain."

Ashley Judd
Credit: Christopher Polk/Getty Images

Judd detailed her accident, saying that a faulty headlamp caused her to trip over a fallen tree. She broke her leg and called what happened an "incredibly harrowing" situation that involved waiting for five hours "lying on the forest floor" before being evacuated. During that time, one of her fellow travelers had to hold her leg in place. 

"With his leg under my badly misshapen leg, biting my stick," Judd explained as she showed off the scrap wood she used. "Howling like a wild animal." She finished, saying that she went into shock and passed out when they reset her bones. After that, she spent "an hour and a half in a hammock, being carried out of the rainforest by my Congolese brothers, who were doing it barefoot, up and over hills, through the river."

During her retelling of the story, Judd reiterated that she was fortunate to be able to pay for all of the medical attention and transportation to the capital city of Kinshasa and, eventually, South Africa.

"I'm in a lot of love. I'm in a lot of compassion and I'm in a lot of gratitude," she said. "I thank everyone for their thoughts and their prayers and their support."