A man has been jailed for stealing face masks from a hospital.
Lerun Hussain, 34, took the vital protective equipment from King’s College Hospital in London, where one of the UK’s youngest coronavirus victims is among the patients to have died after testing positive for COVID-19.
Police were called to the hospital at around 11.20am on Sunday after Hussain was detained by security staff.
They had caught Hussain stealing three surgical masks and officers arrested him on suspicion of theft, as well as for being in breach of a court order.
Hussain, from Clapham, south London, was charged with theft later that day and appeared in court on Tuesday.
Croydon Magistrates’ Court sentenced him to three months in prison after he pleaded guilty to the theft charge.
His attempt to target the hospital came as NHS workers continue to appeal for more personal protective equipment, which many have said is in short supply.
One NHS doctor told Sky News last week his GP surgery had to appeal to its own patients for help with its supply, while others have said the equipment they do have is not up to the task.
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Speaking under condition of anonymity, a paramedic told Sky News he is concerned he is unwittingly spreading coronavirus between patients because of his “sub-standard” and “inappropriate” equipment.
Concerns have also been expressed about the availability of protective personal equipment to other health workers, including pharmacists and care home staff.