Coronavirus kills fifth NHS medic: Father-of-seven nurse, 57, dies alone at home in self-isolation after telling his wife his only protection from infected patients was ‘a flimsy apron and no mask’
A nurse and father-of-seven died alone at his home after he picked up coronavirus when treating a patient in London, his family have revealed.
Thomas Harvey, 57, worked for the NHS for more than 20 years at Goodmayes Hospital in east London and had to self-isolate after catching the virus.
Paramedics broke down his door after he stopped responding while isolated and he died later that day.
Mr Harvey is believed to have expressed concerns about the lack of protective equipment for NHS workers and told his wife that he was given a ‘flimsy apron and no mask’.
He is the fifth medic to die while fighting the coronavirus outbreak in the UK.
His daughter says that Mr Harvey was ‘let down’ and his death could have been prevented, while adding that he was ‘fit and healthy with no underlying health conditions’.
Tamira Harvey told ITV News: ‘My dad was definitely let down.
‘I don’t feel that they’re [NHS staff] safe at the moment, I don’t think that they would think that they’re safe.
‘The Government could have prevented this.’
Mr Harvey’s friend and colleague Margaret Barron told the Sun: ‘Unfortunately after treating a Covid-19 patient on his ward, he contracted the virus and passed away suddenly after fighting for his life for nearly two weeks.
‘Thomas was a devoted member of the NHS for over 20 years and loved his job to the fullest.
‘He looked after all his patients to the best of his ability and was loved by many.
‘He was a cherished colleague, a husband, a father, a grandfather and a best friend.’
North East London NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Professor Oliver Shanley said: ‘It is with deep regret that we share with you that we have sadly lost a dear and valued colleague who had Covid-19.
‘Thomas was a longstanding dedicated member of our intermediate care team.
‘I would like to offer my sincere condolences to Thomas’s family, friends and work colleagues.
‘We are ensuring they are supported through this difficult time and I would like to thank colleagues for the professionalism and compassion they have shown.’
Mr Harvey’s death follows the deaths of four doctors on the frontline in the battle against coronavirus.
Alfa Saadu, 68, died yesterday morning after fighting coronavirus for a fortnight,
His death follows the deaths of GP Dr Habib Zaidi, 76, of Leigh-on-Sea, Essex; consultant Amged El-Hawrani, 55, of Burton, and surgeon Dr Adil El Tayar, 63, of Hereford.
It comes as the UK recorded another 563 coronavirus deaths yesterday, making it the worst day so far in the devastating COVID-19 crisis.
The increase takes the country’s total death toll to 2,352 – today’s surge is 48 per cent larger than yesterday’s increase of 381 fatalities and pushes the total up by 31 per cent in a day.
And 29,474 people have now tested positive for COVID-19. The UK is the fifth hardest-hit nation in Europe and eighth in the world.