A 70-year-old nurse, who served 44 years with the NHS, dies from coronavirus

A nurse, who ‘completely dedicated’ served the NHS for 44 years, has died from the coronavirus at the age of 70.

When Alice Kit Tak Ong was only 23-years-old, she moved to the UK from Hong Kong to study nursing and was dedicated to her job ever since.

Sadly, on April 7th, two weeks after being admitted to the Royal Free hospital in London, Alice lost her life to the deadly virus. The nurse’s family shares she was devoted to her work until the moment she fell ill.


Image credits: Melissa Ong

At the same time, a doctor caring for COVID-19 patients has also died, just days after he was admitted to intensive care.

Dr. Anton Sebastianpillai was admitted to Kingston Hospital’s intensive care in South West London on March 31st. Tragically, he died of the virus only four days later.

A spokesperson for the hospital said that Dr. Sebastianpillai has had his last shift on March 20th. As per Mail Online, the spokesperson said in a statement:

“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.”

According to the Peradeniya Medical School Alumni Association of the United Kingdom, the doctor had retired from his career and had volunteered to work with coronavirus patients.

By April 8th, the confirmed coronavirus cases in the UK are over 55,000, while the death toll is 6,159.

London remains the worst hit, with 1,353 deaths and over 11,000 cases.

Ms. Ong’s daughter, Melissa Ong, told The Guardian that her mother had spent her whole life helping others. Melissa added Alice truly ‘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.”

They believe the 70-year-old nurse contracted the disease while working with infected patients without wearing protective equipment.

The lack of PPE, such as face masks and gloves, is the main reason the government and NHS England have been criticized for. Unfortunately, lots of medics on the frontline still have no access to quality equipment.

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