Natalia Startseva Bahni, 49, was pulled from the water about halfway along Patong Beach by passing tourist Ethiopian national Ephrem Shimondi Gebreegziabher, 38, who saw her floating face down in the water at around 6:45am.
Lifeguards on patrol from the night shift revived her through performing CPR. She regained consciousness and was rushed to Patong Hospital, then later transferred to Vachira Phuket Hospital, but lapsed back into a coma.
Capt Itthikorn Pacharadej of the Phuket Tourist Police today confirmed that Ms Bahni regained consciousness on Tuesday.
“Today she was moved to Bangkok Hospital Phuket. We went to see her, and she could speak and greet us with a smile,” he said.
Asked how Ms Bahni ended up in the water at Patong Beach before dawn last Wednesday, Capt Itthikorn told The Phuket News, “She said that she went to the beach to chill out and went into the water, but was overpowered by large waves.”
Ms Bahni will have to remain in hospital to recover from a lung infection before she can fly home to Switzerland, Capt Itthikorn explained.
“Next she will fly back to Switzerland to receive more medical treatment there,” he said.
* Not Snr Sgt Maj Rattanapong Rosthip as originally reported.