UK (Sky News)

Coronavirus: ‘Healthy’ NHS nurse, 36, dies after contracting COVID-19

By April 4, 2020 No Comments
Areema Nasreen

A 36-year-old NHS nurse, who was believed to have no underlying health issues, has died after contracting coronavirus.

Areema Nasreen died shortly after midnight in intensive care at Walsall Manor Hospital in the West Midlands, where she had worked for 16 years.

The mother-of-three developed symptoms of coronavirus on March 13, including body aches, a high temperature and then a cough.

She had tested positive for COVID-19 a week later and a doctor at the hospital previously told Sky News her condition “deteriorated very quickly”.

But it is understood her family believed she had pulled through the worst of the illness and was on course to make a recovery.

In a tribute to her posted on Facebook, her friend Rubi Aktar said: “My beautiful best friend Areema Nasreen has just passed away. My heart is broken. She fought and fought but Allah decided to take her.

“She was the most loveliest, genuine person you could ever meet, she went above and beyond for everyone she met.

“I’m so grateful that I had the honour to call her my best friend, she saw me at my best and my worst and accepted my every flaw. 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.”

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Her death came as officials announced 569 more people had died in the UK after contracting the disease – bringing the total number of deaths to 2,921.

Her sister Kazeema Nasreen, who works as a healthcare assistant at the same hospital, had told Sky News that family members think she could have picked it up “virtually anywhere”.

Pic: Areema Nasreen
Image:
Pic: Areema Nasreen

The 22-year-old said her sibling was on annual leave when she first started showing symptoms and that she did not believe she contracted it at work.

Ms Nasreen began working at Walsall Manor Hospital as a housekeeper, but qualified as a staff nurse in January last year.

In words of encouragement for anyone considering going into nursing – especially those from Muslim backgrounds – she said at the time: “I would like to think that I can inspire others.

“I cry every morning because I am so happy that I have finally realised my dream of becoming a nurse. I would urge anyone reading this to not give up.”

Commenting on Ms Nasreen’s death, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “I pay tribute to the NHS staff who’ve died serving the NHS, serving the nation.

“It shows the incredible bravery of every member of the NHS who goes into work knowing that these dangers are there.

“I think it is a testament to every doctor and nurse and paramedic and other health professional who is working in the NHS in these difficult times.

“And I think the whole nation is grateful.”

While Ms Nasreen is not thought to have contracted the disease while at work, huge numbers of NHS staff have spoken out about the shortage of protective equipment and lack of testing among health workers.

A series of drive-through facilities have now been set up across the UK in an effort to test as many frontline medical staff as possible.

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