Fury as NHS workers on coronavirus front line are told to RE-USE vital protective equipment with stocks of aprons and masks set to run out this weekend
NHS workers have been left furious at the lack of personal protective equipment in hospitals after being told to reuse it and ‘wear aprons’ to treat coronavirus patients.
The British Medical Association has labelled the situation a ‘sorry state of affairs’ with doctors feeling unprotected at work despite the UK being two months into the crisis.
Frontline medics fear some NHS trusts could run out of gowns and coveralls this weekend with stocks now ‘exhausted’, with the anger coming amid fears they might have to treat virus patients with only plastic aprons for protection.
A nurse wears personal protective equipment at the Chessington testing centre yesterday
New guidance was issued last night amid reports at least 60 NHS trusts were expecting to exhaust their stocks of gowns. This includes all hospitals in London, which reportedly need tens of thousands of gowns delivered urgently.
The guidance from Public Health England sets out what front-line staff should do where there are no gowns left. Options include borrowing from other hospitals with supplies, wearing coveralls or using the flimsy plastic aprons.
British Medical Association council chairman Dr Chaand Nagpaul said the PPE situation in the UK is now ‘a truly sorry state of affairs’
It is a significant U-turn from previous PHE guidance, which required full-length waterproof surgical gowns for all high-risk hospital procedures.
The move will prompt fears more doctors and nurses will become infected due to a lack of PPE, with one leading health figure saying the situation is worrying.
A BMA survey of more than 6,000 doctors across the country said a significant amount of them remain without the protection they need to guard against Covid-19.
Another poll by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) found half of nurses have felt pressure to work without appropriate protective equipment during the crisis.
BMA council chairman Dr Chaand Nagpaul said: ‘Two months into the Covid-19 crisis in Britain, we shouldn’t still be hearing that doctors feel unprotected when they go to work.
Medical staff put on personal protective equipment at a testing centre in Belfast on April 7
‘The Government says that one billion items will soon have been shipped, and while there have been signs of improvement, our research clearly shows that equipment is not reaching all doctors working on the front line.’
Almost half of Scottish nurses feel ‘pressured’ to work without PPE
Almost half of nurses in Scotland have felt pressured to care for patients without adequate personal protective equipment (PPE), according to a survey.
Respondents to the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) questionnaire shows 46% of its members north of the border, including those working in high-risk environments, had felt pressed into working without the PPE despite dangers related to the Covid-19 crisis.
More than two-thirds of respondents – 69% – to the RCN poll had raised concerns about PPE, while 75% had that issue fully or partially addressed.
Theresa Fyffe, RCN Scotland director, said: ‘The responses to this snapshot survey speak for themselves.
‘It’s fundamental to personal safety and effective infection control that nursing staff have the correct PPE and that it fits properly.
‘Incorrectly fitting PPE might not provide effective protection. It’s also essential that they are trained in its proper use and have adequate changing and washing facilities.
‘Our members are telling us this is not the case for everyone and the results support the concerns the RCN has been raising consistently during the pandemic.
‘The Scottish Government has assured staff that a lot of hard work is being done to improve and secure supply, distribution and use of PPE.
‘These results show that there is still more to do. It’s time to make good on the promises that have been made to all nursing staff in the past few weeks.’
A total of 1,465 RCN members who work in Scotland responded to the survey.
The results show 25% of nurses working in high-risk environments had not had their mask fit tested and 31% in these areas had not had training in putting on and taking off PPE.
Almost half – 47% – of respondents working in high-risk environments and 36% in general care environments said they had been asked to re-use single-use equipment.
The Scottish Government claims more than 75 million items of PPE have been delivered to hospitals in Scotland providing care for Covid-19 cases and other conditions.
It is said to be putting pressure on suppliers to increase production levels as well as identify other sources.
An email address has also been set-up for any concerns to be raised.
A Scottish Government spokesman said: ‘We are continuously looking to improve the supply and distribution of the protective equipment.’
He added: ‘Just yesterday the Health and Social Care Secretary said he could not guarantee that hospitals would not run out this weekend.
‘Meanwhile, the BMA has been inundated with approaches from companies offering to do their bit to supply the NHS.
‘This is a truly sorry state of affairs and we renew our call for the Government to work with manufacturers to ramp up domestic supply.’
And NHS Providers chief executive Chris Hopson said: ‘We have now reached the point where national stock of fully fluid repellent gowns and coveralls (is) exhausted.
‘So some trusts will run out of this type of gown or coverall in the next 24 to 48 hours. What next?’
He added that NHS trusts and his group had asked national leaders several times last week to prepare a clear public plan should a trust run out of gowns.
Mr Hopson said the agreed plan in a shortage can be best summarised as to ‘provide the highest level of protection possible with the equipment available’.
Niall Dickson, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, a body that describes itself as speaking for the health and care system, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: ‘I think the worrying situation is absolutely there.
‘The reality is that there is a chance, and I don’t think it’s definite, but there is a chance hospitals could run out or, indeed, other parts of the system could run out of the gowns which are required to treat some, not all, Covid patients.
‘And that means that they have had to issue this guidance to make clear that if somebody is in that position, here is the fall-back which they point out, the World Health Organisation and the Centre for Communicable Diseases in the US have said this is what you should do in that situation.
‘But, of course, it’s much less than satisfactory.’
At least 50 NHS staff members have died from the virus. They include consultant urologist Abdul Mabud Chowdhury, 53, who had warned a lack of PPE put medics at risk.
The new guidance was issued in response to ‘acute shortages of PPE’. It said the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) had approved reusing items and ‘sessional’ use – where one health care worker uses the same PPE for a whole shift.
It said that even though items were designed for single use, ‘HSE recognises that some compromise is needed to optimise the supply of PPE in times of extreme shortages’.
It comes after Health Secretary Matt Hancock admitted he couldn’t guarantee hospitals wouldn’t run out this weekend.
At a briefing yesterday, Mr Hancock said 55,000 more gowns were arriving but admitted the UK was ‘tight’ on supplies.
NHS Providers chief executive Chris Hopson said in a tweet: ‘We have now reached the point where national stock of fully fluid repellent gowns and coveralls (is) exhausted.
He told the Commons health select committee: ‘The challenge of getting protective equipment out to everybody who needs it is an incredibly difficult one.
‘As of this weekend we will have shipped one billion items of personal protective equipment across the UK. I take responsibility for getting PPE out to everyone.’
Asked if he would get gowns to those who needed them this weekend he said: ‘That is what we are aiming to do.’
Almost all the gowns used by the NHS are made in China and the Far East. The UK needs around 150,000 a day, meaning the 55,000 due to arrive yesterday equates to only around eight hours worth. They need to be water-resistant material and have long sleeves.
An RCN survey also found half of 14,000 nursing staff on duty at Easter – including those in the most high-risk areas – felt under pressure to work without PPE.
Almost a third of nursing staff treating Covid-19 patients not on ventilators reported a lack of face and eye protection while only half said they believed they had enough alcohol hand rub.
One in ten nurses said they were relying on face or eye protection that they had either bought themselves or which was homemade.
Donna Kinnair, RCN chief executive, said: ‘All decision makers involved here need to get an urgent grip on the situation. Nursing staff must be given protection.’
Hero NHS doctors and nurses who have died from coronavirus
Here are the NHS workers MailOnline understands to be among those who have died during the coronavirus pandemic so far:
Dr Krishan Arora, general practitioner
Dr Krishan Arora is the latest medical worker to die of Covid-19 bringing the total to 54
Dr Krishan Arora is a doctor who is believed to have died after contracting the virus, as announced by the South West London Clinical Commissioning Group.
The 57-year-old was a senior partner at Violet Lane Medical Practice, and had been a GP in Croydon for 27 years. He died on April 15 after testing positive for the virus.
He had followed national guidance and self-isolated at home when he developed symptoms, and was not in work at the time of his death.
Colleague Dr Agnelo Fernandes said: ‘We are all greatly saddened by the death of Dr Krishan Arora. Krish was extremely well-liked and worked tirelessly to care for his patients and improve services for everyone in Croydon.
‘Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with Krish’s family, friends and close colleagues at this difficult time. We will miss him.’
Amrik Bamotra, radiology support worker
Amrik Bamotra, pictured, a radiology support worker at the King George Hospital in Ilford, east London, has died aged 63
The 63-year-old worked at the King George Hospital in Ilford, east London, before his death from the virus.
Mr Bamotra, known to colleagues as ‘Bob’, was said to have treated everyone ‘like his own family’, and leaves a wife, daughter and son.
Several of his relatives, including his wife and son, also work for Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust (BHRUT).
His family shared a message in his memory which said: ‘Dad was one of those people that, if he saw you in the corridor at work, he would stop and make sure he had a chat with you.
‘He was always positive about everything he did. He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and loved and cared for all his family and friends.
‘There’s not a time when we can say he wouldn’t go that extra mile to do something for anyone to make sure they were happy.
‘He had always been a hard worker. He had touched so many people’s hearts with his personality, which has been shown to us through messages we have received.
‘On that note, we would just like to say thank you to all our family and friends for their love and support through this difficult time.’
Gladys Mujajati, mental health nurse
Gladys Mujajati, pictured, who had an underlying health condition and had stepped away from work in recent weeks, died in hospital earlier this week
The 46-year-old mental health nurse had an underlying health condition and had stepped away from work in recent weeks, died in hospital earlier this week, the Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust said.
The 46-year-old, from Littleover, Derby, worked to support people through the Derby City Community Mental Health Team.
Science minister and MP for Derby North Amanda Solloway described Ms Mujajati’s death as ‘absolutely heartbreaking’.
In a tweet, Ms Solloway said: ‘Absolutely heartbreaking to hear about the loss of Gladys Mujajati, one of our precious NHS workers and constituent.
‘Gladys, was a well loved and caring colleague at Derby City Community Mental Health Team.
‘My thoughts and prayers go out to her family, friends & colleagues.’
The Trust also paid tribute to the nurse, describing her as a ‘warm and caring individual’.
Jane Murphy, clinical support worker, died on April 16
Jane Murphy, pictured, was a clinical support worker at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary before she died of coronavirus
A clinical support worker who was employed in the A&E department at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, Jane Murphy ‘refused to retire’.
The 73-year-old, known to co-workers as Ma Murphy, lost her fight for life on April 16 after falling ill with the virus as those who worked with her hailed her dedication to the health service.
A tribute to Jane, who lived in Bonnyrigg, said: ‘Today NHS Lothian lost one of the funniest, straight talking, hard working support workers it will ever likely to have.
‘The emergency department has lost a friend, a family member and most of all a wonderful human being.
‘Jane the ED will never be the same without you and cannot believe Covid-19 is what got you out of the department after all these years.
‘Thinking of all your family, friends and colleagues. RIP Jane.’
Saxophonist Saxingh shared a video of him playing and added: ‘Dedicating this one to Jane Murphy (73) who sadly passed away this morning due to Covid-19 – she was a clinical support worker at the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh.
‘She was an ace worker and a much loved member of staff.
‘She continued to work and refused to retire from the NHS and she’s been there as a mentor for nurses and doctors who are now consultants and senior charge nurses everywhere.’
Julianne Cadby, business manager, died on April 15
Julianne Cadby, pictured, was a business manager for Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s specialist child and adolescent mental health services
The 49-year-old mother, from Cardiff, worked in a string of roles at her health board for three decades and was a ‘much loved’ member of her team.
She started her career as a medical secretary before becoming a business manager at the specialist Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services.
A spokesman for Cardiff and Vale University Health Board said: ‘Julianne was a much loved member of our team, she was extremely warm and caring and would always make time to help and support hear colleagues.
‘Her dedication shone through, playing a central role in all that we do in the service and her focus was always on ensuring we are delivering the best service we can for children and young people.
‘Her loss will be felt by all the many colleagues she has worked with over the years.
‘She is survived by her husband Chris, their son Evan and her brother Ian. We will miss her greatly.’
Brian Darlington, hospital porter
Long-serving porter Brian Darlington who worked for Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has also died from the virus
A hospital porter, Brian worked for Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Leighton Hospital in Crewe, the Victoria Infirmary in Northwich and Elmhurst Intermediate Care Centre in Winsford.
He had worked at the trust for more than 20 years and was married to wife Ava for 46 years.
The husband, father and grandfather passed away at Leighton Hospital and had tested positive for coronavirus.
Ava paid a heartfelt tribute to her late husband and issued thanks on behalf of the family for the kind messages which have been paid to Brian.
She said: ‘We were married for 46 years and Brian was a great husband, as well as father and grandfather.
‘He was dedicated to the Trust and as a family we are grateful for and appreciative of all of the kind words and messages we have seen and received.’
Lourdes Campbell, healthcare assistant
Healthcare assistant Lourdes Campbell (pictured above) died from the coronavirus
The healthcare assistance died on the critical care ward for Bolton NHS Foundation Trust.
Chiex executive Fiona Noden said: ‘It is with deep regret and huge sadness that I share with you the devastating news that we have lost a friend and colleague to the terrible Covid-19 virus.
‘Lourdes, known as Des to her colleagues, has worked with us for nearly 13 years.
‘She was a well-liked and valued member of the team, known for working extremely hard.
‘She was dedicated to patient care and her colleagues respected her quiet, diligent and compassionate approach.
‘This is a terrible and poignant reminder of the situation we are facing every day to help others and I want to thank every member our staff for their continued care for our patients and community.
‘Their continued courage and commitment to duty is inspirational and a comfort to us all in these difficult times.’
Andy Treble, theatre assistant, died on April 15
Andy Treble, pictured was a theatre assistant at Wrexham Maelor Hospital
The 57-year-old returned to the frontline during the crisis but died on April 15 after a battle with the virus in intensive care.
The Betsi Cadwaladr University Heath Board said: ‘It is with profound sadness that we can confirm that Andy Treble, a theatre assistant at Wrexham Maelor Hospital,has passed away. Andy sadly died on the critical care unit on Wednesday.’
Mr Treble had worked at the hospital in north Wales for almost 40 years and was well-loved by his colleagues.
His sister, Maria Molloy, described her brother as a kind man who dedicated his life to his profession, and ‘always had a smile on his face.’
She said: ‘Andy absolutely loved working at the Maelor, his colleagues were his other family.
‘He had a very kind nature and always put everyone else before himself. He was always laughing and smiling, he was such a good man.
‘We are devastated by his loss but would like to thank the critical care team who did their very best for Andy and above all were there for him at the very end. We will be forever grateful to them.’
His 17-year-old daughter, Emily Treble, also expressed her sadness and said her father would be deeply missed.
Ade Raymond, student nurse
Another victim, Ade Raymond, 48, (pictured) had been working as a healthcare assistant
The 48-year-old had been working as a healthcare assistant for the Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust before he died.
Chief Executive Jinjer Kandola tweeted: ‘It is with great sadness that we confirm the loss of our colleague & friend Ade Raymond due to coronavirus.
‘A much-valued member of the team who was studying for a nursing degree. Ade was a highly respected & much missed by all. RIP Ade.’
Linnette Cruz, dental nurse, died on April 14
Mother-of-one Linnette Cruz, 51, (pictured) was also confirmed to have died after being treated for coronavirus for a month
The 51-year-old senior head nurse at the Brynteg dental practice in Sketty died on April 14 having been admitted with Covid-19 in March, according to NHS Wales.
Brynteg practice owner Nik Patel said: ‘She brought love, light and joy to everyone around her and will be sadly missed by all.’
Karl Bishop, dental director for Swansea Bay University Health Board said: ‘Linnette’s death is deeply upsetting to her family, friends and colleagues and all our thoughts are with them.
‘She was a highly committed and caring dental nurse, respected by her colleagues, patients and the communities in which she worked.
‘Any death to COVID-19 is a very sad event, and where it affects a healthcare professional it is particularly upsetting.
‘The health board will provide all necessary support to the practice and staff during this difficult time.’
Friends have already raised more than £1,500 to pay for her funeral.
Josiane Zauma Ebonja Ekoli, nurse, died on April 13
Aged 55, mother-of-five Josiane Zauma Ebonja Ekoli was an agency nurse who lived in Leeds and worked at Harrogate Hospital. She died on April 13
Aged 55, the mother-of-five was an agency nurse who lived in Leeds and worked at Harrogate Hospital. She died on April 13.
In a tribute, her daughter Naomie said she wanted her mother to be remembered as ‘God-fearing, strong, beautiful and caring’.
‘It meant everything to be a nurse, she’s being doing it for as long as I remember, more than 30 years,’ she said.
Naomie said her mother, who had worked on a coronavirus ward, called the provisions of personal protective equipment (PPE) available ‘poor’.
‘If they don’t work, then we won’t be treated, so the least they could do is up the PPE so they can make sure it doesn’t happen to another family,’ she said.
Jill Foster, chief nurse at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, said Ms Ekoli, known as Josie, was a ‘much-valued’ member of staff.
‘Zauma Ekoli, known as Josie, was a much-valued agency nurse who has worked with the Trust for the past two years,’ she said in a statement.
‘She worked a range of shifts in a number of wards and departments.
‘Josie will be sadly missed by all her friends and colleagues at Harrogate District Hospital and our thoughts are with her family at this difficult time.’
Dr Peter Tun, associate specialist, died on April 12
Father-of-two Dr Peter Tun worked as an associate specialist in neurorehabilitation at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading for more than 21 years
The father-of-two worked as an associate specialist in neurorehabilitation at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading for more than 21 years.
Father-of-two Dr Peter Tun worked as an associate specialist in neurorehabilitation at the Royal Berkshire Hospital for more than 21 years.
The 62-year-old died in the intensive care unit at the hospital in Reading on Monday.
‘Our family is immensely proud of our superhero dad,’ his sons said in a statement.
‘He used to say ‘Treat all your patients like they are your own family’, and this speaks to the type of character that he had.
‘To us, he was simply the best human we know and we will miss him every day.’
The specialist’s colleagues have also paid tribute to him, with one calling him ‘a mentor, a father, and a friend’.
Dr Jonathan Mamo, who worked alongside Dr Tun in the hospital’s neurorehabilitation unit, said: ‘Peter was like a father to all of us in our department in Reading.
‘Despite being a calm and soft-spoken individual he always knew what to say and when to say it.’
He said Dr Tun, who cared for patients with complex neurological conditions, was a ‘great believer in the power of love’ who ‘loved to help people’.
Mary Agyeiwaa Agyapong, nurse, died on April 12
Mary Agyeiwaa Agyapong, 28, (pictured) died on Sunday after undergoing an emergency caesarean to deliver and save her baby daughter
Pregnant Mary Agyeiwaa Agyapong died on April 12 after testing positive for Covid-19 earlier in the month.
David Carter, CEO at Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: ‘Mary worked here for five years and was a highly valued and loved member of our team, a fantastic nurse and a great example of what we stand for in this Trust.’
Mary Agyeiwaa Agyapong’s condition deteriorated rapidly after contracting the virus last week, but desperate to save her baby daughter, she underwent an emergency caesarean.
Tragically, the 28-year-old died just days later on Easter Sunday.
The little girl is understood to be alive but it is not yet clear if she has tested positive for the disease.
However, concerns are being raised after Luton and Dunstable Hospital, where she nursed for five years, confirmed she had been working on ward 12 – which has since become a Covid-19 ward – until March 12 at least and possibly later.
She was eight months pregnant when she died and stopped working at 28 weeks, as permitted in official guidance, which hospital bosses said they followed.
However, it has led to renewed calls for a rethink, with campaigners insisting: ‘All pregnant women shouldn’t be on the frontline.’
Cheryl Williams, ward housekeeper, died on April 12
Cheryl Williams (left), who worked as a housekeeper on an elderly patient ward at North Middlesex University Hospital in Edmonton, north London, died on Easter Sunday
North Middlesex University Hospital said Ms Williams would be remembered as a ‘much-loved colleague’.
Ms Williams, who worked as a housekeeper on an elderly patient ward at the hospital in Edmonton, north London, died on April 12.
Tributes for Ms Williams have also poured in. Sharing a picture of Ms Williams to Facebook, the NHS trust said her contribution to patient care at the hospital was ‘irreplaceable’.
North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust said: ‘With greatest sadness, we can confirm the death of our much-loved colleague Cheryl Williams.
‘As a ward housekeeper on one of our care of the elderly wards, Cheryl was a lynchpin of the care, comfort, and compassion that our patients and local people value so highly, and her personal contribution to patient care is irreplaceable.
‘Her family, friends and colleagues at North Middlesex University Hospital will miss her more than words can describe.
‘We would kindly ask for you to respect the family’s privacy at this difficult time.’
NHS housekeepers are responsible for non-clinical services such as catering, cleaning, equipment and supplies as part of a ward team in a hospital department.
Their duties include talking to and reassuring patients, receiving visitors, keeping the ward clean and tidy and serving meals to those under their care.
Housekeepers also order supplies and undertake clerical and admin tasks.
In a tribute on Twitter, colleague Omodele Olowokere said the death of Ms Williams had ‘left a vacuum’ on the ward.
‘It is with great sadness and heavy heart to share the news that our colleague Cheryl passed away last night,’ she said.
‘The entire Charles Coward team are devastated about the loss. You have left a vacuum for us.
‘Our heartfelt condolences to your family and friends.’
Maureen Ellington, healthcare assistant, died on April 12
Grandmother Mrs Ellington, who was in her early 60s, worked at Southmead Hospital in Bristol and passed away on April 12.
She had worked for the NHS for over 25 years at both Frenchay and Southmead hospitals.
Her family said: ‘She would light up any room she entered. She will always be in our hearts.’
Leilani Medel, nurse
Leilani Medel died after contracting coronavirus and her husband Johnny Medel Jnr is in a critical condition after catching the virus
Mrs Medel, who worked as an agency nurse in south Wales, was described as a ‘wonderful and caring person’. Her employers, Cardiff-based Hoop Recruitment, said: ‘The nursing profession has lost a warm-natured and beautiful nurse who cared for so many vulnerable people during her nursing career.’
A fundraising appeal to help Mrs Medel’s family in the Philippines has also been launched, with donations reaching over £8,000.
Her husband Johnny Medel Jnr, 42, is in a critical condition after also contracting the virus.
Their daughter Carmina Angeline Medel, 13, also had coronavirus but it is understood she has been released from hospital.
Her 35-year-old aunt Shiela Ancheta, who lives in the Philippines, said: ‘We are very sad because we can’t go there to visit her family because of the travel ban.
‘Although she was my niece, she is six years older than me. She was like my older sister.’
Leilani and Johnny, of Coychurch, Bridgend, both worked in healthcare.
Amarante Dias, medical director, death announced on April 13
The hospital in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, confirmed yesterday its employee Amarante Dias passed away after testing positive for covid-19
Amarante Dias, who worked at the Weston General Hospital in north Somerset, was described as a ‘valued and much-loved colleague’ and would be ‘greatly missed’.
Dr William Oldfield, medical director at the University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS trust, said: ‘We are deeply saddened at losing
‘Amarante Dias who was such a valued and much-loved colleague.
‘On behalf of everyone at University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust, including our patients and the communities we serve, I would like to offer my sincerest condolences to his family.
‘Amarante will be greatly missed and we are ensuring that staff have access to support to help them at this difficult time.
‘We will not be commenting further and ask that everybody respects the privacy of the family at their request.’
The Weston Super Mare Association of Malayalees posted a tribute on social media: ‘Our deepest sympathy and prayers to you and your family, (Amarante Dias) will deeply be missed.’
Melujean Ballesteros, 60, nurse, died on April 12
The ‘dedicated and very caring’ Filipino nurse, 60, died at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington, London, on Sunday, April 12, just two days after being admitted
The ‘dedicated and very caring’ Filipino nurse, 60, died at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington, London, on Sunday, April 12, just two days after being admitted.
Her son, Rainier, 37, said: ‘My mum is a dedicated and very caring nurse.
‘She started her career in the UK in 2003, she loved her work as a nurse.’
Rainier, who lives in Calauag in the Philippines, said Mrs Ballesteros had a fever and cough in mid-March and self-isolated for nine days.
But on Friday Rainier said the family convinced her to visit the hospital due to her worsening condition, and so she was picked up by ambulance and was admitted. She died two days later.
Mrs Ballesteros is survived by her two sons, Rainier and Bryan, 38, who also lives in the Philippines, and husband Luis, 64, who lives in the UK.
Kevin Smith, plaster technician, died on April 12
Kevin Smith, who worked putting plaster casts on patients at Doncaster Royal Infirmary, died after catching coronavirus. Colleagues paid tribute to him as an ‘incredible person’ who ‘loved his job’ and as a man who was ‘renowned for his warm personality’
Doncaster Royal Infirmary confirmed the death of plaster technician Kevin Smith on April 12, following a ‘brief, but courageous, battle with Covid-19’.
He worked at the hospital for more than 35 years and was ‘renowned for his warm personality, diligence and compassion’, the trust said.
His heartbroken daughter Ellie Whitley wrote on social media: ‘It’s so overwhelming to see so many amazing comments for such an incredible person who loved his job and everyone he worked with for many years.
‘Thank you everyone. We will all miss him greatly but never forget him, ever!’
The chief executive at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals, Richard Parker OBE, said: ‘I am utterly heartbroken to share the news that Kevin Smith, a well-respected and hugely popular member of our team, has sadly passed away following a brief but courageous battle with Covid-19.
‘A plaster technician and valued member of the team for over 35 years, Kev, as he was known to friends and colleagues, was renowned for his warm personality, diligence and compassion.’
Gareth Roberts, 65, nurse, died on April 11
Grandfather Gareth Roberts, 65, (pictured) had come out of retirement to work at Llandough Hospital in Cardiff and was doing extra shifts to cope with the crisis
Grandfather Gareth Roberts, 65, had come out of retirement to work at Llandough Hospital in Cardiff and was doing extra shifts to cope with the crisis.
But he became ill himself with coronavirus, and gradually his condition deteriorated. He died at Prince Charles Hospital in Merthyr Tydfil, south Wales on Saturday.
His family have now hit out at the lack of protective equipment after the death of the ‘much-loved and dedicated’ member of the health team.
Family friend Janette Leonard said: ‘He didn’t have PPE. In the beginning he said he didn’t have anything.
‘For Gareth, he paid the ultimate price. Yeah we’re angry.
‘Why would you send a soldier on to the front line without combat gear? It’s unthinkable.’
Mr Roberts devoted 40 years of his life to caring for people in hospitals around Cardiff and spent his last shift at Llandough Hospital in the Welsh capital.
He worked as a nurse across the Cardiff and Vale health board area since the 1980s, coming out of retirement in January 2015.
His wife Linda was told to attend his bedside at 3am when it became clear he would pass away.
Oscar King Jr, 45, hospital porter, died on April 11
Mr King Jr, believed to have worked at the hospital for 10 years, was described as a ‘beloved friend, loving husband, and devoted father’ to his 10-year-old daughter
Aged 45, Oscar King Jr, a Filipino porter at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, passed away on April 11. He was said to have worked for the hospital for more than a decade, ‘always doing his job with great enthusiasm and joy’.
Mr King Jr, believed to have worked at the hospital for 10 years, was described as a ‘beloved friend, loving husband, and devoted father’ to his 10-year-old daughter.
His wife had also been taken to hospital after suffering severe symptoms, according to the GoFundMe page.
A Commons library report published last year found that more than 18,000 Filipinos work in the NHS, third only to the numbers from Britain and India.
The Philippines also provided more nurses and clinical support staff than any other country outside of the UK, the study found.
Lola McEvoy, NHS organiser for the GMB union, said the porters’ deaths was ‘awful, awful news’.
‘Support staff in our NHS are risking their lives to protect us. The sacrifice to our country of those who have lost their lives must never be forgotten,’ she added.
Elbert Rico, hospital porter, died on April 10
Mr Rico worked as a porter there since moving to the UK from the Philippines in 2004 ‘and loved the work that he did’
A colleague of Mr King Jr at John Radcliffe, Mr Rico worked as a porter there since moving to the UK from the Philippines in 2004 ‘and loved the work that he did’, according to a fundraising page published by his family.
Both men were married to members of the nursing team at the hospital, the trust said.
Fundraising pages were set up in the names of both workers following their deaths.
A page set up for Mr Rico said he had worked for the hospital since coming to the UK in 2004, adding that he ‘loved the work that he did’.
‘He was always hard working and would prioritise others’ needs firsts. He would walk around the hospital with a smile on his face and very rarely would he call in sick from work.’
Donna Campbell, healthcare support worker, died on April 10
Donna Campbell, 54, tested positive for coronavirus after being admitted into intensive care at University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff. She has been described as a bubbly personality
Donna Campbell, 54, worked as a nurse at the Velindre cancer hospital, Cardiff, where she was known for singing and dancing with patients.
She had been at the hospital for 20 years after getting her first position there as a volunteer, and was known among staff and patients for her bright and bubbly personality.
Ms Campbell was treated in intensive care at University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, after she tested positive for the virus.
The Velindre University NHS Trust paid tribute to the nurse who will ‘always have a special place in our hearts’.
‘She was often found singing and dancing, entertaining patients and staff, making everyone smile,’ they said.
‘Donna will always have a special place in our hearts and we will all want to send our heartfelt sympathy and love to her family at this very difficult time.’
‘Our staff and particularly Donna’s team on First Floor Ward, are completely heartbroken that their beautiful, kind-hearted friend and colleague has died’.
‘She was without doubt a treasured member of our work family who could light up a room with her infectious laugh and bubbly personality.
‘But at the same time she had the most wonderful ability to comfort and care for people.’
Sara Trollope, 51, nurse, died on April 10
Sara Trollope (pictured with the PM last year), 51, was just months away from retiring when she became yet another hero to been named a victim of the deadly bug on Saturday
A 51-year-old matron for older adult mental health services in Hillingdon, west London, Ms Trollope died at Watford General hospital on April 10 after testing positive for the virus.
She was just months away from retiring when she became yet another hero to be struck down by the deadly bug.
Ms Trollope, who worked at Hillingdon Hospital – where she was pictured next to he PM last year – has been praised for her support for older people with dementia.
Medical director Dr Paul Hopper said: ‘Sara had that unbeatable combination of kindness, selflessness and total determination to get things right for patients. She was an example to every one of us.’
News of Ms Trollope’s death came as it emerged that Mr Johnson came close to death as he desperately fought coronavirus in an intensive care unit. He has now been released and is recovering.
Julie Omar, 52, nurse, died on April 10
Aged 52, the trauma and orthopaedics nurse at Redditch’s Alexandra Hospital, in Worcestershire, died at home while self-isolating with symptoms on April 10
Aged 52, the trauma and orthopaedics nurse at Redditch’s Alexandra Hospital, in Worcestershire, died at home while self-isolating with symptoms on April 10.
She was an experienced trauma and orthopaedics nurse who had most recently been working at Redditch’s Alexandra Hospital.
Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust Chief Executive Matthew Hopkin issued a statement which read: ‘It is with great sorrow that I have to share with you the sad news that a much-loved member of our nursing team – Julie Omar – has died.
Julie had been self-isolating at home after developing symptoms of Covid-19, but sadly her condition deteriorated and she died at home.
‘We have been asked by her family not to share any more details at this stage and we will of course respect those wishes.’
Amor Gatinao, 50, nurse, died on April 10
Another nurse, Amor Padilla Gatinao, 50, (pictured) who worked as a nurse at St Charles Hospital, Ladbroke Grove, West London, died after falling ill on Mother’s Day
The nurse is reported to have died on the morning of April 10, having worked at St Charles Hospital, west London.
Amor Padilla Gatinao, 50, who worked as a nurse at St Charles Hospital, Ladbroke Grove, West London, died after falling ill on Mother’s Day.
Her family suspect Ms Padilla-Gatinao, who suffered from asthma, type-2 diabetes and hyperthyroidism, caught the virus at work where she did not have the right protective clothing.
Her daughter Allysa Gatinao, 24, said: ‘There is a shortage of PPE in hospitals. Matt Hancock can’t deny this as the evidence is there.’
Aimee O’Rourke, 39, nurse, died on April 9
Aimee O’Rourke, 39, passed away last night at the QEQM Hospital in Margate, Kent, following the surfacing of symptoms two weeks ago
Aged 39, the nurse and mother died at the Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother Hospital (QEQMH) in Margate, Kent, where she worked, on Thursday, April 9.
Ms O’Rourke had three daughters, Maddie, Mollie and Meghan, who described her mother as an ‘angel’ who will ‘wear [her] NHS crown forever more’.
Friends of Ms O’Rourke paid tribute to the ‘one in a million’ nurse.
Friend Hannah Walden wrote on Facebook: ‘Yesterday heaven gained a beautiful young lady.
‘I was lucky to know her and work with her when I worked for CDU (clinical decision unit) QEQM. You were an amazing nurse and mum sleep tight Aimee O’Rourke God bless.’
Lucy Page said: ‘Every now and again special people come in to your life and they have the highest impact.
‘Aimee O’Rourke taught to me fight for what I believe in and gave me courage so many times to do it.
‘…Aimee I love you and not a single day will go by when I don’t think.about you. You were one in a million and you are going to leave such an empty space in all our hearts forever. Miss you already.’
Dr Abdul Mabud Chowdhury, 53, consultant urologist, died on April 8
The doctor, pictured with his wife, worked as a Consultant Urologist at Homerton Hospital in east London
The 53-year-old wrote a Facebook post asking Prime Minister Boris Johnson to urgently provide every NHS worker with PPE just five days before he died on the night of Wednesday April 8.
Abdul Mabud Chowdhury passed away in hospital after a 15-day battle against the virus.
Just three weeks ago, he wrote to the Prime Minister, asking him to ‘urgently’ ensure PPE was available for ‘each and every NHS worker in the UK’.
The doctor, known to friends and family as Faisal, worked as a consultant urologist in east London and leaves behind a wife, with whom he only recently celebrated a 25th wedding anniversary, and two children.
He died at 1am at Queens Hospital in Romford, according to his brother, who wrote: ‘I ask you humbly my dear brothers and sisters to please keep my brother in your prayers.’
The Muslim Doctors Association paid tribute to him in a statement, which reads: ‘We are deeply saddened by the death of Dr Abdul Mabud Chowdhury, Consultant Urologist at Homerton Hospital, after fighting for his life from Covid-19.
‘He leaves behind his wife and two children. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.
‘Two weeks before his admission to hospital he wrote a message to the Prime Minister urging for better PPE. May he rest in peace.’
Dr Edmond Adedeji, 62, doctor, died on April 8
Dr Edmond Adedeji (pictured), 62, who worked as a locum registrar in the emergency department of Great Western Hospital in Swindon, Wiltshire, died on April 8
The 62-year-old worked as a locum registrar in the emergency department of Great Western Hospital in Swindon, Wiltshire, and died ‘doing a job he loved’ on April 8.
‘He died doing a job he loved, serving others before himself,’ his family said in a statement to the BBC.
The hospital’s chief executive added he was a ‘respected and well-liked member of the team’.
Dr Fayez Ayache, GP, died on April 8
Dr Fayez Ayache, who lived in Raydon in Suffolk, had been diagnosed with bilateral pneumonia and coronavirus
The 76-year-old general practitioner and grandfather died in Ipswich Hospital on April 8, having been diagnosed with bilateral pneumonia and coronavirus.
The grandfather, who lived in Raydon in Suffolk, had been diagnosed with bilateral pneumonia and coronavirus.
His family said he stopped working nearly a month ago but may have continued to visit patients at home.
Dr Ayache retired two years ago but quickly returned to work ‘a couple of days a week’, his eldest daughter Layla Ayache, 35.
He worked as a GP with North Clacton Medical Group and also ran an ear, nose and throat clinic at Ipswich Hospital.
Dr Ayache stopped working again three-and-a-half weeks ago because of the risk of coronavirus, his daughter said.
She said she did not know where he had contracted the virus, but believed he may still have been seeing people to give medical advice.
Elsie Sazuze, care home nurse, died on April 7
Mrs Sazuze, who worked for Wolverhampton-based agency Totallycare, died on April 7 at Good Hope Hospital in Sutton Coldfield
Mrs Sazuze, who worked for Wolverhampton-based agency Totallycare, died on April 7 at Good Hope Hospital in Sutton Coldfield, according to the BBC, who spoke with her husband Ken.
Ms Sazuze fell ill at home in Erdington, Birmingham.
Her husband, Ken Sazuze, said his wife called him at home before being put on a ventilator.
He said: ‘She started telling me, ‘Ken, if I don’t come back, be strong, I love you, be strong for the kids.
Her childhood friend William Fungatira paid tribute as he released an album of pictures on behalf of her family.
Mr Fungatira said: ‘I have known her all my life. Elsie was as a naturally quiet person but very caring, friendly, cheerful and resilient. She had a passion to always help others.
‘She was dedicated to helping people. I remember every time we visited their home she always welcomed us with great hospitality.
‘It’s a great loss to all of us who knew her and indeed to the wider community because she lost her life doing the job she loved. She will be greatly missed.’
Leilani Dayrit, 47, nurse, died on April 7
Leilani Dayrit, 47, worked as a nurse at St Cross Hospital in Rugby, Warwickshire, and died on April 7
Described as a ‘ray of sunshine’, Ms Dayrit, a Filipino nurse who worked at St Cross Hospital in Rugby, died on April 7.
The 47-year-old worked as a nurse at St Cross Hospital in Rugby, Warwickshire, and died on April 7.
She leaves behind her husband a daughter, who described her as ‘selfless until the very end’ and a ‘truly special and beautiful person inside and out’.
A crowdfunding page set up to fund funeral costs has already raised more than £11,000.
It reads: ‘She was a ray of sunshine to those people who were fortunate to meet her.
‘Her beautiful smile mirrors her beautiful heart full of love. Her strong will power to surpass any trial in life and her optimism resonates to everyone.’
Mrs Dayrit had worked for the NHS for 16 years after training in her native Philippines.
She was described as a ‘very dedicated worker’ who was often referred to by children of her friends as ‘Mummy Lei’ or ‘second mother’.
She grew up with seven siblings in Vigan City, going on to become a community youth leader, student and even a beauty queen.
She got her degree in nursing from the University of North Philippines before moving to the UK.
Donald Suelto, 51, nurse, died on April 7
Donald Suelto who worked at Hammersmith Hospital in west London, died on April 7
The 51-year-old, who worked at Hammersmith Hospital in west London, died on April 7 after going into self-isolation with coronavirus symptoms.
Nurse Alejandro Fernandez said Mr Suelto, originally from the Philippines, was a ‘spirited friend’ who was ‘friendly to everyone’ and said he was struggling to get over the shock of the news.
In a tribute to his friend, Mr Fernandez said: ‘I still can’t believe it. You were never alone. As I said, you are a hero, everyone knows that. So proud of you.
‘He was an enthusiastic nurse, full of life, loved his NHS job and a spirited friend with a loving heart. Our prayers and thoughts go out to his family. Rest in Peace Donds.’
Alice Kit Tak Ong, 70, nurse, died on April 7
NHS nurse Alice Kit Tak Ong died from the coronavirus, she moved to the UK when she was 23-years-old to study nursing
The 70-year-old, originally from Hong Kong, died on April 7 after 44 years of working for the NHS. She was described by her daughter Melissa as ‘generous to everyone else before herself’.
Speaking to The Guardian, Ms Ong’s daughter said her mother had spent her life helping others.
Melissa Ong said her mother ‘loved her job and she loved her patients’.
‘She was completely dedicated to her work, that’s what she was doing until the moment she was taken ill’, she said.
It is believed that she may have contracted the disease while working at a hospital without protective equipment.
She had first come to the UK at just 23-year-old to study nursing.
Janice Graham, 58, nurse, died on April 6
Janice Graham, 58, became the first nurse in Scotland to die as a result of the coronavirus pandemic on April 6
The 58-year-old healthcare support worker from NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) became the first nurse in Scotland to die as a result of the coronavirus pandemic on April 6.
Louise Long, chief officer of Inverclyde Health and Social Care Partnership, said: ‘We are saddened to confirm a member of staff has passed away due to Covid-19.
‘Our thoughts are with Janice’s loved ones at this difficult time.
‘Janice was a valued team member in our District Nursing and Evening Services team and brought kindness and compassion to patients and colleagues.
‘Her bright and engaging personality and razor-sharp wit will be sorely missed.
‘A memorial book will be open at Port Glasgow Health Centre to staff who wish to pay tribute to Janice.
‘We are incredibly thankful to our staff for their tireless efforts during this crisis. We are here to support them as much as possible during this challenging time.’
Syed Haider, GP, died on April 6
The family doctor worked in Dagenham, east London, and died in hospital on April 6 after it is believed he developed coronavirus symptoms.
Barbara Moore, 54, patient discharge planner, died on April 6
Described as an ‘unsung hero’, the 54-year-old grandmother died on April 6, the Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said.
A staff member at the Valence Medical Centre in Dagenham, east London – where Dr Haider worked – confirmed the tragic news.
The News International, a Pakistani newspaper, spoke to his son, who described him as a ‘selfless man driven by his passion for his profession’.
He added: ‘Even whilst in hospital breathing his last, he was urging doctors and nurses to pay attention to other patients rather than him.
‘Many at his age would have retired yet his dedication to his profession was immeasurable.’
Dr Alfa Saadu, 68, doctor, died on April 6
Dr Saadu had been working at Queen Victoria Memorial Hospital in Welwyn, Hertfordshire
The 68-year-old, who had returned to work from retirement, died on April 6 at the Whittington Hospital in north London.
He died after fighting the virus for two weeks, had been working at Queen Victoria Memorial Hospital in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire.
His son Dani told HuffPost UK: ‘He was a very passionate man, who cared about saving people. As soon you spoke to him about medicine his face would light up.
‘He worked for the NHS for nearly 40 years in different hospitals across London. He loved to lecture people in the world of medicine – he did so in the UK and Africa.’
He also described his father as a ‘massive family man’, adding that he leaves behind two sons and a wife who is also a retired doctor, in occupational health.
Dr Saadu, who was originally from Nigeria, was a former clinical director of the care of the elderly department at West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust.
He was also medical director of Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, Essex, and medical director and consultant physician at Ealing Hospital in West London.
Jitendra Rathod, surgeon, died on April 6
Jitendra Rathod, 58, was admitted to the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, where he first started working in the 1990s, but died from coronavirus
A ‘highly regarded’ associate specialist in cardio-thoracic surgery at the University Hospital of Wales, Mr Rathod died on the morning of April 6.
Mr Rathod, who was from India, had been working in the hospital since the 1990s.
A statement by Cardiff and Vale University Health Board said: ‘It is with profound sadness that we must inform you that Mr Jitendra Rathod, associate specialist in cardiothoracic surgery, has passed away.
‘He died early this morning on our general intensive care unit after testing positive for Covid-19.’
The father-of-two was described as an ‘incredibly dedicated surgeon’ who cared deeply for his patients and was highly regarded in the medical profession in Wales.
A cardiothoracic surgeon is a specialist who operates on the heart, lungs and other thoracic (chest) organs.
‘He was well-liked and and greatly respected by one and all,’ the health board statement added.
‘He was very compassionate and a wonderful human being. His commitment to the speciality was exemplary. He is survived by his wife and two sons.’
Mr Rathod worked in the department of cardio-throacic surgery since the mid 1990s. He later had a brief stint abroad before returning to UHW in 2006.
Lynsay Coventry, 54, midwife, died on April 6
In a touching tribute, face mask-wearing medics at Prices Alexandra lined the corridors and fell silent to remember their colleague
Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, Essex announced the death of 54-year-old – the first involving a serving NHS midwife after testing positive for the virus – on April 5.
Ms Coventry passed away at neighbouring Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust after initially self-isolating at home and was not at work before her death.
In a touching tribute, face mask-wearing medics at Prices Alexandra lined the corridors and fell silent to remember their colleague.
With ‘great sadness’, the chief executive of the Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust Lance McCarthy, announced her death and paid tribute to her ‘professionalism and commitment’.
In a statement, Ms Coventry’s family said: ‘As a family, our hearts are broken at the loss of our loving, wonderful and caring mum, sister, daughter and grandmother.
‘We each know how much she loved and cherished us. Her love for us all was unfailing and her strength in the way she cared and supported us will fill our memories.
‘What we also know is how proud she was to be an NHS midwife. Lynsay followed her dream and trained as a midwife later in life.
‘It was a role she committed herself to and saw the midwifery team at the Princess Alexandra Hospital as her other family.
‘She was a very well-respected midwife who supported many hundreds of women as they welcomed their babies into the world.’
Glen Corbin, 59, nurse, died on April 4
The 59-year-old had worked at the Park Royal Centre for Mental Health in Harlesden, north-west London, for more than 25 years and his Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust announced his death on April 4.
His colleagues have paid tribute to him after he died of the disease, saying he was looking forward to his 60th birthday this year.
They said: ‘Glen was a much loved colleague and will be sorely missed. Our condolences to his family, friends and loved ones at this sad and difficult time.’
It was revealed last week that 20,000 former NHS staff have come back to the profession to help combat the deadly disease.
Rebecca Mack, 29, nurse, died on April 5
Tributes have poured in for Rebecca Mack (pictured), a child cancer nurse from Newcastle who’s died from coronavirus
The 29-year-old died on April 5, after going into self-isolation with symptoms. Her friend Sarah Bredin-Kemp said she was an ‘incredible nurse’.
Her heartbroken best friend, Sarah Bredin-Kemp, revealed her sorrow in a touching Facebook post about the medic, who most recently worked as a 111 operator
She wrote: ‘Becca was one of the best friends I’ve ever had. She was a devoted friend, an incredible nurse and a unapologetically imperfect person: She was the most accident-prone, stubborn, chatterbox with a bizarre catchphrase and inappropriate joke for every occasion.
‘Her iconic love of leopard print and statement earrings was rivaled only by Pat Butcher herself.
‘She would never take ‘I’m busy, I’m not coming to the pub’ as an answer. She was useless at hiding her emotions: she would just describe things she didn’t like as as ‘interesting’ or ‘alternative’, with an expression of pure loathing.
‘She was a high maintenance, foot-in-mouth oversharer with a love of cheesy music, crappy tv and an inexplicable hatred of small animals.
‘But she would be the first in line to tell you off when you were doubting yourself.
‘She was honest, warm and charismatic. She worked hard and made her family proud every single day.’
Dr Anton Sebastianpillai, consultant, died on April 4
Dr Anton Sebastianpillai became the thirteenth frontline medic to die from the virus on Saturday
The consultant geriatrician died on April 4, four days after being admitted to the intensive care unit and two weeks after completing his final shift on March 20, according to Kingston Hospital in south-west London.
In a statement, a spokesman for the hospital said Dr Anton had completed his last shift with the hospital on March 20.
‘It is with great sadness that I confirm the death of a consultant geriatrician who was part of the team…Dr Anton Sebastianpillai died on Saturday 4 April 2020 having been cared for in the hospital’s intensive care unit since March 31.
‘Dr Sebastianpillai completed his last shift with us on March 20 and we would like to extend our sincere condolences to his family.’
The Peradeniya Medical School Alumni Association of the United Kingdom said the doctor had retired from his career and had volunteered to work with Covid-19 patients.
Liz Glanister, nurse, died on April 3
On April 6, Aintree University Hospital confirmed that they had lost long-serving staff nurse Liz Glanister, 68, after she contracted Covid-19
Aintree University Hospital said the staff nurse died on Friday April 3, with her family describing the loss as ‘simply beyond words’.
In a statement on social media, the hospital said: ‘All our thoughts are with Liz’s family at this time and we offer them our sincere condolences. Liz will be sadly missed by all those who knew and worked with her.
‘I’d like to express my sincere gratitude to Liz for her dedication to her patients, colleagues and friends over many years.’
At Liverpool Town Hall, St George’s Hall and The Cunard Building the Union flag was flown at half mast in honour of Ms Glanister.
John Alagos, 27, nurse, died on April 3
John Alagos, a London nurse of 27 who treated covid-19 patients, fell ill at work
The Mail On Sunday reported that the 27-year-old nurse – who treated coronavirus patients at Watford General Hospital – died after a shift on Friday April 3.
His mother, Gina Gustilo, 50, told The Mail on Sunday her son had not been wearing the right protective clothing at work.
He returned home on Friday following a night shift, after complaining of suffering a headache and high temperature throughout the night.
A tearful Mrs Gustilo said: ‘I asked ‘Why didn’t you come home?’ He said he had asked other staff but they said they were short of staff and they did not let him go. I said, ‘OK, take some paracetamol.’ After a few minutes, I found him turning blue in his bed.’
After finding her son unconscious in his bedroom, Ms Gustilo immediately called 999 but paramedics were unable to resuscitate him.
Watford General Hospital said in a statement: ‘Our staff are fully briefed on the symptoms of Covid-19 and we would never expect anyone to remain at work if they were showing these symptoms or indeed were unwell in any way.
‘We have always kept our staff updated on the latest PPE guidance to make sure they have the right level of protection.’ A spokeswoman added: ‘John was very popular and will be missed greatly.’
Mr Alagos, from Watford, was born in the Philippines, but moved to Britain as a youngster and had become a British citizen.
Ms Gustilo said her son did not have any underlying medical conditions.
Areema Nasreen, 36, nurse, died on April 2
Areema Nasreen, 36, a Walsall staff nurse and mother-of-three, has died from coronavirus, becoming the country’s youngest health worker to be killed by the disease
Aged 36, Ms Nasreen died on April 2 in intensive care at Walsall Manor Hospital in the West Midlands – where she had worked for 16 years.
The NHS employee of 16 years, who started in housekeeping before training as a nurse, was diagnosed with the infection in late March after developing a soaring temperature, body aches and a cough.
A heartbroken relative of Ms Nasreen paid tribute to the mother-of-three and said: ‘The immediate family are devastated. Everyone is in shock this morning.
‘She was always so full of life. She was devoted to her job as a nurse, she absolutely loved it. She passed away doing what she loved.
‘I’m really sad for the rest of the family, she was a fantastic person.’
Nurse Rubi Aktar paid tribute to her ‘best friend’, who she described as the ‘most loveliest, genuine person you could ever meet’.
In an emotional Facebook post, she wrote: ‘I am so broken that words can’t explain. I can’t believe I will not see your smile again.
‘You made me the nurse that I am today, with your support, motivation and inspiration I am the nurse that I am today and I hope I can do you proud Areema.
‘I love you so much and I will never forget you. You had so much to live for, I am sorry you didn’t get to see your kids grow up and I’m sorry that you didn’t get to complete your career.’
Sami Shousha, 79, researcher, died on April 2
Professor Mohamed Sami Shousha was from Egypt and had worked at UK cancer research laboratories since 1978 and was an honorary professor of histopathology at Imperial College London
The professor, 79, who had worked at UK cancer research laboratories at London’s Hammersmith and Charing Cross hospitals since 1978, died on April 2.
He had worked at UK cancer research laboratories since 1978 and was an honorary professor of histopathology at Imperial College London.
His nephew, Abdelrahman Shousha, told The Sun: ‘He was very keen on going to work on his final days despite the health hazards.
‘However, most likely, his work did not involve direct contact with Covid-19 patients.
‘He had been hospitalised since March 23, after contracting the virus, before he succumbed to the illness on Thursday April 2. We will all miss him dearly.’
One of his former pupils, Dr Neha Tabassum, tweeted: ‘My prayers and thoughts are with his family. It’s so sad to hear this news, I am in tears!!
‘Professor Sami Shousha was one of my mentor. Without his support, my PhD would not have been possible. He was such an amazing human being.’
Thomas Harvey, 57, nurse, died on March 29
Thomas Harvey, 57, picked up coronavirus when treating a patient in London and has now died of the virus
The healthcare assistant, 57, a father-of-seven who worked at Goodmayes Hospital in Ilford, east London, died at home on March 29.
The father-of-seven, died ‘gasping for air’ at the family home in east London, having collapsed in the bathroom.
His son, also named Thomas, described having to punch a hole in the door as he and other family members made desperate attempts to get to the 57-year-old.
He said efforts to provide protective equipment to healthcare staff and to roll out Covid-19 testing were much too slow.
Mr Harvey, 24, said: ‘Why has it taken so long? Why have we had to lose my dad, and similar situations, for you (the Government) to take action?
‘It is frustrating to think that a situation like this could have been prevented with the correct care from the Government.’
He said the grandfather-of-three had been given only ‘gloves and a flimsy apron’ to protect himself from infection, and had isolated himself at home after beginning to show symptoms of the virus a few weeks ago.
Despite paramedics being called out when his condition worsened around a week before his death, he was not admitted to hospital or tested for the virus, a decision the family were surprised by.
Dr Amged El-Hawrani, 55, consultant, died on March 28
Mr El-Hawrani was primarily an ear, nose and throat consultant and surgeon but before he became unwell, he had also been volunteering in A&E
An ear, nose and throat consultant with University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust (UHDB), the 55-year-old died at the Glenfield Hospital in Leicester on March 28.
The ‘dedicated’ consulant, who was an ear, nose and throat specialist at Queen’s Hospital in Burton, was known for being ‘extremely hard-working’ and deeply committed to his patients.
He died on March 28 at the Glenfield Hospital in Leicester – the first UK death of a full-time hospital doctor from the virus since the crisis began.
Mr El-Hawrani was born in Sudan and served primarily an ear, nose and throat consultant and surgeon but before he became unwell, he had also been volunteering in A&E.
His family said they were devastated but ‘immensely proud’, and staff at his hospital said they were ‘desperately saddened’.
But the British Medical Association warned that his death would reverberate amongst NHS staff, who are becoming increasingly concerned over the lack of protective equipment.
Pooja Sharma, pharmacist, died on March 26
Pooja, 32, (pictured) worked as a pharmacist in East Sussex and is thought to have received three days of care and treatment for the virus before her death
Ms Sharma, a pharmacist at Eastbourne District General Hospital, died unexpectedly on March 26 according to a JustGiving page created in her memory.
Her father Sudhir Sharma, an immigration officer at Heathrow Airport, had died the previous day.
Sudhir Sharma, who worked at Terminal 3, passed away on Wednesday before pharmacist Pooja suffered the same tragic fate the following day, The Sun reports.
The father, 61, from Hounslow in west London, last worked on January 7, therefore officials don’t believe he contracted Covid-19 on duty and likely picked it up elsewhere.
A friend of Pooja’s posted online: ‘May their souls rest in peace. Sending my heartiest condolences, prayers and love to their family.’
They added: ‘Please, please, please inform family and friends to take this very seriously and to self-isolate, socially distance themselves as much as possible, for their families if not for themselves.
Dr Habib Zaidi, 76, doctor, died on March 25
Dr Habib Zaidi worked as a GP at Eastwood Group Practice in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex
The GP in Leigh-on-Sea died in intensive care at Southend Hospital, Essex, on March 25, aged 76.
He became ill on March 24 and died just 24 hours later in hospital. Test results for Covid-19 came back positive yesteday – and his daughter Sarah, a GP at his practice in Essex, had earlier said he had ‘textbook symptoms’.
Dr Zaidi, who came to the UK from Pakistan in the early 1970s and worked at Eastwood Group Practice in Leigh-on-Sea, had been self-isolating for a week before he became ill.
His death raised concerns among the medical community about being exposed to the deadly virus without sufficient protective equipment.
Dr Zaidi’s family said: ‘For him to be snatched away from us in this way, in these desperately troubling times for the whole world, has left us truly heartbroken.
‘But we are overwhelmed, touched and comforted by the many kind tributes and love we have received. The name Habib means beloved and beloved he truly was.
‘We know that not only has he left a gaping hole in our hearts but a loss that is also felt within the community that he devoted almost his entire life to.’
His daughter Sarah told the BBC: ‘For that to be the thing that took him is too much to bear. It is reflective of his sacrifice.’
Dr Jose Garcia-Lobera, GP chair at Southend Clinical Commissioning Group, said he was a ‘hugely respected, selfless man who dedicated his life to helping others’.
He added: ‘Dr Zaidi will always be remembered for his significant contribution to local health services through his long career as a GP.
Dr Adil El Tayar, 63, transplant surgeon, died on March 25
Mr Adil El Tayar, 63, an organ transplant consultant, developed symptoms after he volunteered to help treat patients
The 63-year-old died at West Middlesex University Hospital in Isleworth, west London, on March 25, working as a locum surgeon before his death.His grieving family warned NHS staff were ‘sitting ducks’ and called for them to be given better protective kit and disease testing.
Cousin Dr Hisham El-Khider said he believed Dr El Tayar’s death was preventable, saying: ‘If we don’t improve protection for staff across the board then more of us will die.
‘The brunt of this disease is only going to get bigger and bigger, and more needs to be done.
‘If we don’t, there will be more doctors and nurses who fall seriously ill and are unable to treat patients who desperately require their care.’
Mr El Tayar, a father-of-four, self-isolated once he developed symptoms but had to be taken to hospital with breathing difficulties and died last Wednesday at the West Middlesex University Hospital in Isleworth, West London.
His cousin, BBC journalist Zeinab Badawi, said: ‘He’d wanted to be deployed where he would be most useful during the crisis.
‘That was typical of my cousin Adil, always willing to help, always with a willing smile.’
She added: ‘It had taken just 12 days for Adil to go from a seemingly fit and capable doctor working in a busy hospital to lying in a hospital morgue.’
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